75 cashless/less-cash townships, with an overwhelming 56 of them being in Gujarat, were launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday.
The towns span across 12 states contributing to around 1.5 lakh cashless transactions per day and around 5.5 crore transactions a year.
Some of the prominent townships include those of state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC), NTPC, SAIL and BHEL, as also those of cooperative firms like IFFCO and KRIBHCO.
Essar in a statement said two of its townships in Gujarat at Hazira (near Surat) and Vadinar (near Jamnagar) were on Friday recognised as among townships pan-India that are less-cash townships.
"The initiative was launched by NITI (National Institution for Transforming India) Aayog that declared Essar townships as 'Cashless Role Model Township', which inspires other corporates to follow", the statement said.
The townships were selected on the basis of a third-party assessment by Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWC).
To qualify as a less-cash townships, the conditions included the township must have completed deployment of a payment acceptance infrastructure, and all the families residing there would have to covered under training programmes. Also, more than 80 per cent of the total number of transactions must have been done through digital modes of payments during the review period.
"Of the two Essar townships, the Hazira township, also known as Nand Niketan, is India's first private sector township to go cashless with the help of The Mobile Wallet (TMW), a Mumbai-based financial technology company", the statement said.