This report on CSES study was published in The New Indian Express on 09.01.2017
A study has revealed that 91 percent of the population in the rural areas of Ernakulam have not done any cashless transaction in their entire lifetime.
Do you think rural India is ready to go cashless? The answer seems an emphatic no! The country is still far away from being a cashless economy, as can be assumed from the findings of a study conducted by Kochi based Centre for Socio Economic and Environmental Studies (CSES) on cashless transactions.
The study reveals that 91 percent of the population in the rural areas of Ernakulam, the first in the country to achieve universal literacy and India’s first financially inclusive district, has not done any cashless transaction in their entire lifetime. Don’t be surprised! It’s true!
A case study
Maneedu, an agrarian village on the outskirts of Kochi some 25 kilometres from the district headquarters, was one of the villages taken as a subject for the study. With well plastered concrete buildings, consumer stores, small townships, paved streets, and swathes of rubber plantations, Maneedu reflects the image of a developed village in God’s Own Country. But when Latha (name changed), a widow who works as a private school teacher, was interviewed as part of the survey she was at a loss. Though she has the backing of a good education, Latha is still unaware of digital transactions.
Her’s is not an isolated case. Only 1.6 percent of the people, who were interviewed, have begun using cashless facility after demonetization, said Bibin Thambi, who along with Jayan K M, Ramshad M, Ben Rois Jose, Aanchal Nair, Dinoop K K and Swathi Mohanan, researchers at CSES, conducted the study.
Five hundred randomly selected adult respondents from selected panchayats were interviewed during the survey.