In an interesting turn of events, the monthly Unified Payments Interface (UPI) ecosystem across India saw a massive spike in activity. After the disastrous second wave of COVID-19 that swept across the country, the uptick in UPI activity went through the roof after the staggered lockdown curbs were lifted in various stages across India.
While lockdown during the peak pandemic months of 2021 caused the number of transactions to drop severely, the post-wave activity more than compensates for that. Data released by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), on Thursday, showed that the number of transactions seen during the month of June was approximately 2.80 billion with a worth of around Rs 5,47,373 crore on the UPI interface platforms. While the over-arching data was released by NPCI, the data for individual payment gateways has not yet been released.
This number shows a significant rise in the number of transactions, especially when compared to previous months of April and May. In April the total count came up to 2.64 billion transactions at a worth of around Rs 4,93,633. In the month of May, these numbers only slightly increased as the staggered lockdowns and curbs on restrictions started to ease in different parts of the country.
The count in May was around 2.53 billion transactions conducted nationwide, while the total value of these transactions across the various payment gateways came up to around Rs 4,90,638 crore. The change from the previous month to June indicates a nearly 10% increase in activity and consumer habits.
This increase also points to the revival of businesses post the second wave and the ensuing pandemic lockdown in May. The other branches of NPCI, such as Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS), Aadhaar Enabled Payment System (AePS), National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC), and even Immediate Payment Service (IMPS) saw an uptake in activity and transactions in the month of June, with May showing a noticeable drop in activity.
For FASTags, the growth showed 157.86 million transactions at a value of Rs 2576.28 crore as opposed to the transactions numbers in May which stood at 116.48 million at a value of Rs 2,125.16 crore. The upward trend suggests an increase in mobility after the lockdown.
BBPS saw 45.47 million transactions being conducted on its platform. Similarly, AePS and IMPS also saw a boost of 87.56 million transactions and 303.7 million transactions respectively. The cross-platform increase in activity indicates that people are becoming more and more reliant on UPI based services and online transactions.