Contending that large volumes of liquid cash are a big source of corruption and black money, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday appealed to the people to "lead the change" towards cashless transactions to lay the strong foundations of an India where there is no place for such malaise.
"In 21st century India, there is no place for corruption. Corruption slows down growth and takes a toll on the dreams of the poor, neo-middle class and middle class," he wrote in an article posted on Linkedin.com.
"Large volumes of liquid cash are a big source of corruption and black money," he said while referring to his "historic" decision on November 8 to scrap Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes with the aim of ending corruption and black money.
Asserting that in 21st century India, there is no place for corruption, Modi said, "Corruption slows down growth and takes a toll on the dreams of the poor, neo-middle class and middle class."
In this context, he referred to his pitch for cashless transactions.
"I urge all of you, particularly my young friends to lead the change and inspire others to turn towards cashless transactions. This will set the strong foundations of an India where there is no place for corruption and black money," the prime minister said.
"Today we live in an era of mobile banking and mobile wallets. Ordering food, buying and selling furniture, ordering a taxi... All of this and lot more is possible through your mobiles. Technology has brought speed and convenience in our lives," he added.
Along with the article, he posted pictorial references to cashless options like credit cards.
"I am sure most of you are using cards and e-wallets regularly but I thought I must share with you ways through which increased cashless transactions are possible," he said.
Modi said the November 8 decision offered "a unique opportunity" for small traders, who have a central role in the economic transformation of India.
"Today, our trading community has a historic chance to upgrade themselves and embrace more technology, which will bring greater prosperity," he said.
He said when he made the announcement, he was aware that the people of India "will face inconvenience but I had requested the people of India to bear this short term pain for long term gain. I am happy to see that the people of India are bearing temporary difficulties for the long term gain of the nation."
The prime minister said over the last few days, he had opportunities to travel to rural as well as urban areas in Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, Goa and Punjab. "Wherever I went, I asked the people -- should corruption and black money be eliminated? Should the poor, neo-middle and middle class get their due? The answer I got everywhere was a resounding yes!"
Image: Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters.