In a move that may ease online funds transfer for customers beyond banking hours, the Reserve Bank of India has in its vision document 2019-21 on payment and settlement systems in India, proposed the possibility of extending the availability of National Electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT) round-the-clock on all the seven days if the week, i.e. 24×7 basis.
The Central Bank will also examine the possibility of extending the timings for customer transactions in RTGS (Real Time Gross Settlement) based on industry preparedness and customer demand, the RBI said.
Unlike RTGS, funds transfers through the NEFT system do not occur in real-time basis. Currently, NEFT is not allowed on Sundays, second and fourth Saturday of the month and on the declared bank holidays for the calender year. NEFT services are available from 8:00 am to 6:30 pm on weekdays (Mon-Fri) and from 8:00 am to 12:30 pm on Saturday.
Customers can currently transfer money through Immediate Payment Service (IMPS) however the maximum amount allowed is RS. 2 lakh.
The RTGS is primarily meant for large value transactions. The RTGS window, for customers transactions is available to banks from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm on a working day, for settlement at the RBI end.
If RBI makes NEFT 24×7, it will not only ease the fund transfer for customers round the clock but will also take some load-off the bank branches for executing such transactions.