In November 2019, National Payments Corporation of India released a whitepaper for “Vajra” the Blockchain based Payments System. Today that White Paper is “Not Found” on the official site.
January 2020 began with almost every media house covering the awe-inspiring announcement from the people behind India’s Universal Payments Interface (UPI), the launch of a Blockchain Platform called “Vajra”. The link which once returned the mighty whitepaper from NPCI, now gives back a “not found” error. Don’t worry though, we have a copy. Read on.
What is/was Vajra?
The National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) had announced Vajra Platform, based on blockchain technology to make payments fast and secure. The highlight of the Vajra Platform per the now unfound whitepaper is that it automates clearing and settlement of payments, drastically reducing the need for manual reconciliation.
It uses a permissions model to ensure that only approved parties are a part of the network. Payment companies can apply to be a part of the network. Once approved, they can deploy the platform using an application programming interface (API) that will be provided by NPCI.
Media reports from January 2020 quoted NPCI Statement, “Vajra will be a permissioned network that will be setup so that only the parties who have been approved by the Network Administrator can be a part of the network. Since Vajra is being developed for a payments processing industry, permission less blockchain systems were not considered.”
Where is the Original White Paper?
There have been no updates on the announcement since January 2020 and the site where the Whitepaper of Vajra was stored, no longer has it there.
So what happened to the white paper? Did the project get shelved? Or are we waiting for an updated version? Unfortunately there are no concrete answers to these questions.
Coin Crunch managed to source the original whitepaper for reference. It can be accessed from this link.
What becomes of Vajra Now?
It is hard to tell at the stage where NPCI is with their blockchain solution. Blockchain or no blockchain, India’s payment systems are far more robust than many other countries and it is thanks to NPCI.
Use of blockchain in payments can enhance few features like transparency, faster clearance, however, the real question is, do we need it?
What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.