With reference to the report, “Cash is king again” (October 2) by Tinesh Bhasin, Sanjay Kumar Singh and Subrata Panda, the preference for cash transactions was interrupted for sometime by the hype and hoopla of demonetisation; now, cash is back in its usual role.
A cashless society is neither feasible nor desirable. Most ordinary people do not see cash as a “social evil”; they see it as a normal public utility and free at that. A majority of cash transactions are legitimate and most people who use cash are law-abiding citizens.
Personally, I do not want the state and all financial institutions to know every detail of how I spend my money and where. The Supreme Court has said that privacy is a constitutional right; an electronic trail for every purchase or transaction is the last thing we need today and contrary to what we wish to be. With good old cash, companies cannot make a profit. But what is the benefit of a cashless society? Greater surveillance.
Whether India can go digital on transactions depends on the internet. Cases of cyber theft are on the rise even as digital penetration is modest in the country. Can the government assure citizens that digital transactions are hack-proof? Security experts say more prevalent the use of plastic cards, higher the chances of cyber fraud.
Ensuring the safety of transactions is crucial, as a majority of the people are not tech-savvy. Until the right security systems are in place, cash is the best and safest way for transactions.
H N Ramakrishna
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