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Petrol pumps protest banks’ levying transaction fee; refuse card payments from Monday

Petrol pump owners are protesting banks’ charging 1% transaction fee on every transaction made via card, and have decided to stop accepting card payments from Monday.

The petroleum dealers feel that the levy of 1 percent transaction fee erodes into their margins which are based on volumes.

The petrol stations cash-only operation is likely to hit at cash crunch of consumers. Though cash flow in ATMs and banks have improved comparatively, but has not vanished completely.

The petrol dealers’ move comes at a time when the government is trying to encourage non-cash transactions and have even announced a 0.75% cashback offer on purchase of petrol using cards.

These are testing times for the Modi government, though it is fighting against odds in curbing corruption and triggering growth engine of the economy.

The arsenal thrown at government this time has come from domestic rating agency Icra, and not from the Opposition camp.

IANS reported Icra’s claim that advance estimate of 7.1 percent GDP released by Central Statistical Organisation (CSO), will have major errors as it does not include the data for the months after demonetisation.

The agency on Friday pegged the expected growth for 2016-17 lower at 6.8 percent.

Given the impact of demonetisation on actual activity from mid-November 2016 onward, projecting GDP growth for the full year by extrapolating the trends up to October 2016 for several sectors, may introduce more errors than in earlier years. This would be particularly apt for cash intensive sectors such as construction,” Icra said in a statement.

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