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BSCL bags Smart Cities Digital Payment Award

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Bhubaneswar: Adding yet another feather to its cap, Bhubaneswar Smart City Limited (BSCL) has won the Best Digital Payment Innovator Award, conceptualised by Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA). It was declared on Monday.

This was part of the initiative taken up by MoUHA during August last year under Smart Cities Digital Payment Awards (SCDPA) 2018. There were three categories under SCDPA-2018.

As a part of its Smart City Proposal, BSCL has started implementing Common Payment Card System (CPCS) under Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode through ICICI Bank. The proposed system focuses on facilitating payment transactions for citizen services across the city through Odyssey Card. These services primarily include payments pertaining to buses and other transit modes, parking, municipal services (property taxes, trade license fee and other charges), utilities (electricity, water, etc.) and also includes recreational and retail payments. The project envisages operationalisation of digital payment ecosystem in the city for accepting different payments being accepted by the Government.

Under this project 325 Point of Sale (POS) machines will be installed across the city to facilitate payment services for citizens at primate distance. Service delivery points, named as My Odyssey Centre with POS devices shall be available to citizens at approximately 250-300 mts of walkable distance to avail all kinds of services including payment of municipal services, utility bills etc.

As part of the Phase-I of the project, total of 2,000 cards have been issued to citizens so far. Presently besides several services Odyssey City card can be used to book “Mo Bus’’ tickets through MoBus mobile application. Twenty percent discounts are being offered by Capital Region Urban Transport (CRUT) on all tickets booking through Odyssey City Card on `MoBus’ mobile application.

The Smart Cities Digital Payments Awards 2018 ‘100 days Challenge in 100 Smart Cities’ was a part of this endeavour of Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA).The objective of these awards was to guide, motivate, recognize and reward the Smart Cities for promoting digital payments and carrying out innovative payment initiatives on all available channels like BHlM, BharatQR, UPI, AadharPay, Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS), NEFT and Electronic Wallets and others.

The awards were classified in three categories: Best digital payments adopter, Best digital payments innovator and Fastest growing Smart City focusing on digital payments. Bhubaneswar received the award under Best digital payments innovator as it exhibits the most innovative implementation of the digital payments options for its citizens.

The Smart Cities were divided into 4 different sub categories based on their population to enable comparison of similar sized cities to provide an accurate overview of the top performers. Bhubaneswar Smart City falls under the Category-II with 5-10 lakh population.

All 100 Smart Cities were part of the selection under this program. The award was based on a two-staged process. The Stage-I of the process involved Smart Cities filling in a questionnaire based on the extent of promotion and enablement of digital payments carried out in the city. Seventy-two smart cities were shortlisted including Bhubaneswar for Stage II. A detailed questionnaire was shared with the selected Smart Cities for Stage II evaluation.

The Stage-II evaluation under the chairmanship of Secretary, MoHUA, shortlisted three top cities in each category for presentations to understand the depth of digital payment initiatives in their cities concerned.

Bhubaneswar Smart City was shortlisted for presentation under two categories i.e. “Best Digital Payment Innovator” and “Fastest growing Smart City Focusing on Digital Payments”. However, based on the presentations evaluated by the Evaluation Committee, Bhubaneswar Smart City bagged the winning award under the category of “Best Digital Payment Innovator”.

This achievement would help Bhubaneswar to further enhance and bring the digital payment systems in all areas of the services across Bhubaneswar.

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