Events relating to UIDAI have filled me with a profound sense of disappointment

Days after getting the eKYC license back on a temporary basis, Airtel’s, CEO, Gopal Vittal sent out a letter to all employees in which he mentioned about the lapses in its governance of the customer authentication process.

He said that “The biggest lesson for me is that we could have handled the situation in a far better way. I would like to point out several things we could have done differently. First, we could have acted faster. If customers were inconvenienced, we knew. And we should have done something about it immediately. Second, we could have been far more responsive to the concerns of key Government departments. Third, we could have shown urgency relating to the spirit of compliance even if we adhered to the letter behind compliance.”

“Airtel Payments Bank has served over 50 million customers and has seen a transaction throughput of almost 3000 crores per month and growing and the events relating to UIDAI have filled me with a profound sense of regret and disappointment for the situation that we find ourselves in,” Vittal added.

“When one of the top officers of RBI handed over the license for Airtel Payments bank to us, he said three powerful words. Serve India well,” Vittal further added.

To recall, Bharti Airtel and Airtel Payments Bank have been served with an Interim Order dated December 15, 2017 by the Unique Identification Authority of India, Government of India (“UIDAI”) directing suspension of the e-KYC license key of Airtel / APBL with immediate effect as the telco was using the Aadhaar-eKYC based SIM verification process to open payments bank accounts of its subscribers without their ‘informed consent’.

However, last week UIDAI decided to allow Bharti Airtel Ltd to resume Aadhaar-based e-KYC verification of telecom subscribers till 10 January.

Airtel Payment Bank was launched in January it offers 7.25 percent interest which is somehow high to others payments bank.