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India’s Digital Drive, Captured In Posts From Anand Mahindra And Paytm CEO – NDTV

A picture shared by Paytm CEO shows a street food vendor who accepts digital payments.

Two posts, shared by two of India’s most well-known businessmen, show just how far the nation has come towards realising the union government’s vision of a cashless economy.

Shortly before Paytm’s mega IPO kick-off this morning, its CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma shared a picture depicting how prevalent digital transactions have become in the country today. Mr Sharma re-tweeted a picture of a street food vendor who accepts digital payments. The photo shows the seller with Paytm QR code stickers stuck to his food cart – a sight that may be common today but would have been surprising just a few years ago. 

Paytm’s long-anticipated Rs 18,300-crore share sale via IPO opened for subscription today. Paytm’s IPO is likely to be the biggest in the country’s corporate history, breaking a record held by Coal India Ltd, which raised Rs 15,000 crore more than a decade earlier.

The digital payments app became a household name after the shock demonetisation of 2016, when 86% of cash was invalidated after PM Modi announced the decision to ban Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 banknotes. Electronic transactions went up sharply at that time since most people had no option but to use debit and credit cards or digital wallets like Paytm. 

On Saturday, Mahindra Group Chairman Anand Mahindra also shared a video which encapsulates the “large-scale conversion to digital payments in India”. The video shows an animal decked up in vibrant clothes, possibly for a celebratory procession of some sort. What stands out, however, is the sticker with a QR code stuck to the animal’s forehead. The video shows a man scanning the code on his phone to complete a digital payment.

“Do you need any more evidence of the large-scale conversion to digital payments in India?!” asked Anand Mahindra while sharing the clip.

The two posts have together racked up thousands of comments, ‘likes’ and shares. 

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