Paytm shares fell more than 12% to 672 rupees on the BSE in early trade on Monday, reaching an all-time low. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has barred Paytm Payments Bank, founded by Vijay Shekhar Sharma, from accepting new customers until its information technology system has been thoroughly audited.
The RBI’s action is based on “material supervisory concerns,” and the restrictions will remain in place until the central bank conducts a comprehensive audit of its information technology systems, according to a statement issued on Friday.
Paytm Payments Bank Ltd’s onboarding of new customers will be subject to specific permission being granted by the central bank after reviewing the report of the information technology auditors, it added. Sharma owns 51% of Paytm Payments Bank and the remaining 49% is owned by One97 Communications.
Later, in a tweet, Paytm Payments Bank stated that it is taking all necessary steps to comply with the RBI’s orders. “Dear customers, we appreciate your business. We are taking every precaution to comply with the RBI’s instructions. Our existing customers can continue to use all of our banking services without interruption.”
After receiving its licence in 2015, Paytm Payments Bank began operations in 2017 to assist Paytm customers without access to the formal banking sector in opening bank accounts. It received approval from the RBI to operate as a scheduled payments bank in December.
Paytm’s parent company, One 97 Communications Ltd, raised $2.5 billion in its IPO, but a 27 percent drop in its November 18, 2021 debut made it one of the worst initial showings by a major technology firm since the late 1990s dot-com bubble. So far in 2022 (year-to-date or YTD), the stock is down more than 49 percent, while it is down about 56 percent since listing.