Use of Smartcards to Deliver Government Benefits in Andhra Pradesh

Doug Johnson


Since late 2007, Indian technology company Financial Information Networks and Operations (FINO), in collaboration with the state government of Andhra Pradesh and several partner banks, has delivered payments from two separate government programs – the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA) and Social Security Pensions (SSP) to beneficiaries using a platform based on smartcards and mobile smartcard readers. In this report, we describe the smartcard payment system and analyse its impact on the beneficiaries of the programs and the efficiency of program delivery. Our analysis reveals that the smartcard payment system has resulted in greater convenience and reduced fraud.