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Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched New initiatives for RBI

  • IAS NEXT, Lucknow
  • 15, Nov 2021
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Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched two customer-centric initiatives of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI):

  1. The RBI Retail Direct Scheme.
  2. The Reserve Bank-Integrated Ombudsman Scheme.

The two schemes will expand the scope of investment in the country and make access to capital markets easier and more secure for investors.

What is the RBI Retail Direct Scheme?

The Scheme is aimed at enhancing access to the government securities market for retail investors.

  • It offers them a new avenue for directly investing in the securities issued by the Centre and the state governments.
  • Investors will be able to easily open and maintain their government securities account online with the RBI, free of cost.
  • The scheme offers a portal avenue to invest in central government securities, treasury bills, state development loans and Sovereign Gold Bonds (SGBs).
  • The scheme places India in a list of select few countries offering such a facility.

What is the Reserve Bank-Integrated Ombudsman Scheme ?

  • It is aimed at further improving the grievance redress mechanism for resolving customer complaints against entities regulated by the central bank.
  • The central theme of the scheme is based on ‘One Nation-One Ombudsman’ with one portal, one email and one address for the customers to lodge their complaints.
  • The RBI has decided to integrate the three ombudsman schemes into one and also simplified the scheme by covering all complaints involving deficiency in service by centralising the receipt and initial processing of complaints to enhance process efficiency.
  • RB-IOS will do away with the jurisdictional limitations as well as limited grounds for complaints. RBI will provide a single reference point for the customers to submit documents, track status of complaints filed and provide feedback.

Please note that:

The central bank’s alternate grievance redress mechanism currently comprises three ombudsman schemes— the Banking Ombudsman Scheme (BOS), launched in 1995, the Ombudsman Scheme for Non-Banking Financial Companies (OS-NBFC), 2018 and the Ombudsman Scheme for Digital Transactions (OSDT), 2019.

Importance of the schemes:

  • The move comes at a time when rising inflation adds pressure on the RBI to lift rates.
  • Tighter monetary policy is likely to weaken the demand for bonds, making it challenging for the government to execute its near-record borrowing program.
  • Other emerging-market nations in Asia, like the Philippines, have also sought to raise funds from citizens to battle the pandemic.