Shashi Arora resigned from Airtel Payments Bank after UIDAI issue

Airtel Shashi AroraShashi Arora, managing director and CEO of Airtel Payments Bank, has resigned amid controversy after the suspension of the company’s eKYC licence by Aadhaar-issuing body UIDAI.

Shashi Arora has been working with Airtel, the largest telecom operator in India, in several senior leadership roles since 2006. Airtel appointed Shashi Arora as the MD and CEO of Airtel Payments Bank on June 1, 2016.

“He has been an asset for Airtel and over the years has contributed to the company’s growth story. Having led the operations in key telecom circles followed by building a strong DTH business, he has laid the foundation for Airtel’s payments bank operations,” a statement from Airtel said.

UIDAI had earlier barred Airtel and Airtel Payments Bank from conducting Aadhaar-based verification of customers using the eKYC process as well as e-KYC of payments bank clients.

UIDAI took the strong action on the telecom operator following allegations that Airtel had used the Aadhaar-eKYC based SIM verification process to open payments bank accounts of its subscribers without their informed consent.

UIDAI on Thursday allowed Bharti Airtel to use Aadhaar for re-verification of its mobile customers till January 10 with stiff riders after it returned Rs 138-crore LPG subsidy remitted to the unsolicited payments bank accounts. UIDAI said that Airtel Payments Bank eKYC licence will remain suspended till final enquiry and audit report.

UIDAI also took strong objection to allegations that such payments bank accounts are being linked to receive LPG subsidy.

The Aadhaar linked e-KYC service of UIDAI provides an instant, electronic proof of identity and proof of address along with date of birth and gender, resident’s mobile number and email address to the service provider.