Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS)

September 29, 2016

Bharat Bill Payment System eases the payment of bills and improves the security & speed of payments through the central unit (BBPCU) & operating units (BBPOUs).

The Bharat Bill Payment System has recently been launched by the Reserve Bank of India as a mandatory system, for easing the payments of bills across geographies. The BBPS offers integrated and interoperable bill payment service with security, certainty and reliability of transactions.

The service is available in multiple payment modes, online and through a network of agents. An instant confirmation is generated for the bill payments. The BBPS will transform the society from cash to electronic payment system, making it less dependent on cash.

Objectives of BBPS

  1. The system is accessible anytime from anywhere, making it convenient for the customers.
  2. The system increases the trust of the customers by providing reliable services.
  3. The multiple numbers of payment modes is an added advantage.
  4. The system provides on the spot payment confirmation making it easily verifiable.

Benefits of BBPS

The benefits of the Bharat Bill Payment System can be divided into two categories, namely customer benefits and participant benefits.

Customer Benefits

  1. The customers will enjoy the facility of payment of bills anywhere and at any time just by connecting to the BBPS network, online or through agents.
  2. The access to the system will be available everywhere, including the no or minimal banking region.
  3. Multi-modes of payment could be used like debit cards, credit cards, e-wallets, etc.
  4. Payment for any bill from any biller could be made through a single portal.
  5. The service centres for the bill payments will be available at the nearest to a customer's workplace or residence.
  6. The bank branches, ATMs, Customer Service centres, etc., could be the outlet of BBPS. A customer could make payment from any BBPS outlet.
  7. The instant confirmation in the form of SMS or email or paper receipt for the bill payment is a sign of relaxation for the customers.
  8. Security and reliability could be entrusted in the customers with the use of this system.

Participants Benefits

  1. The system will be a convenient and efficient medium for the customers and the stakeholders.
  2. A standard system for making bill payments will be created for both i.e. Customers and Participants.
  3. Frauds could be reduced to nil by active monitoring and implementing of the risk mitigation system.
  4. The system will make the process of bill payment faster and bill presentation quicker.
  5. The system reduces the cost for the billers by providing e-bills.
  6. It will transform the cash mode of bill payment to automatic mode, along with encouraging self-service mode of payment.
  7. With the development of the BBPS, the system can provide various value added services in relation to bill payments by the customers.

Scope of BBPS

  1. The Bharat Bill Payment System will make the collection of the utility bill payment convenient and comfortable. The system will provide service to collect payments for the repetitive, everyday activities of the customer. For instance, telephone bill, electricity bill, water bill, etc.
  2. The system will extend its functions to collect payments for the services other than those mentioned above, like government taxes, school fees, mutual fund payments, insurance premiums, etc., as notified by RBI from time to time.
  3. Online facility to make bill payments will be provided. Service centres will be available at the ATMs, bank branches, and agents' place. Multiple modes for making a payment like debit or credit cards, e-wallets, cash, net banking, etc., will be available.

Note: Scope of the system might be expanded gradually.

Participants of the System

The BBPS is mainly divided into two authorised participants carrying different activities, due to which it could be called a two-tiered system. They are:

  1. Bharat Bill Payment Central Unit (BBPCU)
    This unit will be the sole unit authorised for operating BBPS. The unit will set guidelines for operational, technical and business development for the participants and the whole system. It will also manage the settlement and clearing activities. For implementing BBPS efficiently, the NPCI (National Payments Corporation of India) will be regarded as BBPCU, till BBPCU is not launched as a separate unit under NCPI.
  2. Bharat Bill Payment Operating Units (BBPOU)
    The Reserve Bank of India authorises BBPOU as the operating unit to function in conformity with the regulations made by the BBPCU. The Bharat Bill Payment System can have multiple BBPOUs operating under the system efficiently unlike a single BBPCU. The BBPOUs will function in layers, getting enhanced by a network of agents. It will work with various billers, payment gateways, agency networks, aggregators and customers for managing the payment of bills. Banks and non-bank entities are both eligible to operate as BBPOU.

Other participants of the BBPS will include banks, payment gateways, billers, service providers, agents, etc.

Accepted Modes of Payment

The Bharat Bill Payment System makes it convenient for all the customers by allowing various ways of payment like,

  • Cash
  • Plastic Money- Debit and Credit Cards
  • Internet Banking
  • NEFT
  • E-wallet
  • UPI
  • IMPS
  • Prepaid Cards

The system also allows payment through numerous channels such as internet, mobile, ATM, Bank branch, Agents, POS, etc.

Additionally, various payment options are available like fully, partly, excess, minimum, etc.

Procedure of Bharat Bill Payment System

All the participating entities should comply with all the regulations and guidelines made by BBPS. The BBPS services will be provided 24X7, so the participants must maintain their connectivity accordingly. The billers will be provided with an online and offline mode of connection. The transactions will be sent across through authorised network connecting all the participants of the system with the BBPCU. Proper care will be taken for protecting the customers' data, and strict security measures will be set for the same. The settlement of ON-US and OFF-US transactions will be monitored appropriated as per the Settlement Guarantee Fund mechanism. The transaction and settlement reports should be retrieved on a daily basis from BBPCU for ensuring accounts are reconciled.

 

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