Annual Report RBI Ombudsman Scheme 2018-19

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Annual Report RBI Ombudsman Scheme for the year 2018-19 has issued in the silver jubilee year of Banking Ombudsman Scheme (BOS) has special relevance, since it is being released at the confluence of 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, the champion of customer rights.

Annual Report RBI Ombudsman Scheme 2018-19

Annual Report RBI Ombudsman Scheme Highlights

Here is the Annual Report RBI Ombudsman Scheme Highlights for the year 2018-19:

Brief analysis of complaints handled by BOs during the year

  • The complaints received at BOs rose by 32,311 taking the total to 1,95,901 complaints in 2018-19 over the previous year (1,63,590), recording a year on year (Y-o-Y) increase of 19.75%. Of these, 72.19% were received electronically i.e., through the online portal and by emails as against 63.61% in the previous year;
  • The disposal rate for this year (2018-19) was 94.03% as against 96.46% in 2017-18. This is largely due to rise in volume of complaints with resource remaining the same;
  • While non-observance of fair practices code continued to remain the major ground of complaints during the year, its percentage came down from 22.10% in the previous year to 19.17% in the current year. ATM and debit card issues had increased from 15.08% in last year to 18.65% this year;
  • Complaints received on grounds relating to pension, levy of charges without notice, credit card related issues and remittance have declined this year vis-àvis previous year. The number of complaints pertaining to ‘mis-selling’ have gone up from 579 complaints in 2017-18 to 1,115 complaints this year, an increase of 92.57%;
  • The number of complaints resolved by agreement i.e., through intervention of OBOs, mediation and conciliation, etc. rose from 65.82% during the previous year to 70.40% in 2018-19;
  • The number of appeals received in 2018-19 stood at 78 as compared to 125 in 2017-18;
  • The average cost of handling a complaint came down from ₹3,504/- in 2017-18 to ₹3,145/- in 2018-19 due to increased volume of disposal by the OBOs with the same resources as available in the previous year. There is thus an increased level of efficiency at the OBOs.

Brief analysis of complaints handled by Ombudsman Scheme for Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFC-Os)

  • The number of complaints received at NBFC-Os rose from 675 in four months operation during 2017-18 to 3,991 in 2018-19;
  • Non-adherence to fair practices code constituted 40.44% of complaints received, followed by non-observance of RBI directions (17.21%), levy of charges without notice (12.63%) and lack of transparency in contract / loan agreement (9.17%);
  • The disposal rate of NBFC-Os stood at 95.41% in 2017-18 and 99.10% in 2018- 19;
  • One appeal has been received against the decision of NBFC-O during 2018- 19, as compared to nil in the previous year.

Developments during the Year

  • Ombudsman Scheme for Digital Transactions (OSDT) was introduced to provide grievance redressal forum for the consumers of the Payment System Participants (popularly known as Prepaid Payment Instrument providers);
  • The NBFC-O Scheme was extended to cover the regulated non-deposit taking NBFCs having asset size of ₹00 crore and above;
  • Internal Ombudsman (IO) Scheme was reviewed and extended to all Scheduled Commercial Banks having more than 10 outlets (excluding RRBs).

Turn Around Time for Disposal of Complaints

The time taken by BOs to dispose a complaint stood at 47 days during the year 2018-19 as compared to 53 days a year ago. The most remarkable improvement was marked with regard to complaints against recovery agents, which witnessed a reduction by 18 days, i.e., from 61 days to 43 days.

Important Developments in BOS

  • Launch of the Ombudsman Scheme for Digital Transactions (OSDT)
  • Extension of the NBFC-O Scheme to Non-Deposit Taking NBFCs
  • Launch of Complaint Management System (CMS)
  • Awareness Initiatives
  • Opening of third Ombudsman Office at New Delhi
  • Annual Conference of Banking Ombudsmen (BOs)
  • Review of Internal Ombudsman Mechanism in Banks

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