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How Indian Government & RBI is Killing Freelancing In India

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How Indian Government & RBI is Killing Freelancing In India

Reserve bank of India Internet business in India is rising, and we all know how badly government wants foreign investment in the country. Before, I go ahead with this article; let me tell you something about myself: I’m not a finance guy, and I have very limited knowledge about finances. Though, one thing which I know well is how freelancing works, how Paypal works, how Payoneer works, and what government is doing to promote online jobs in India.

There s no denying the fact, maximum source of income from freelancing or blogging comes from western countries like U.S, U.K and there are many options to receive the payment.

  • You can use PayPal to receive payment (With limit of-course)
  • You can request for monthly cheque payment
  • Direct ACH transfer. (Offered by shareasale, Clickbank)

As a blogger, I have account on all major affiliate networks like CJ, Clickbank and many others. Being in India, one thing which I know: Receiving foreign payment is a task. Specially, when you have to wait 2 weeks for cheque to receive door steps, when you have to wait another 20-25  days for amount to be credit into your account. Technically, if a foreign cheque is issued on 1st of month, I will be seeing that money not before 40-60 days. That’s an epic two month wait-time.

How Indian government is making receiving foreign payment tough:

Do you remember, when Paypal stopped services in India, and when Payoneer completely shut down it’s services in India. It was a moment of chaos for all the bloggers and freelancers. We all know, Paypal or Payoneer cards were the best way to receive foreign payment immediately, and accepted by all major affiliate networks.

Later Indian government & RBI allowed Paypal to resume the services, but with limitations. You need to provide your PAN card details, along with no way to use existing Paypal money for purchases. Along with this, you can’t send or receive payment from one Indian Paypal account to another Indian paypal account. Specially, when E-commerce is growing in India, and Paypal which is a standard payment system globally, such limitations are a road block for an entrepreneur. Yes, there are alternatives, but we all know how good and how bad they are.

India is a country of freelancers, and most of work are outsourced from here, Paypal and Payoneer are backbone for any individual freelancer to receive money. With reserve bank of India, imposing limitation to Paypal, and stopping Payoneer to do business in India, they are literally killing the young India freelancing community.

  • How many of you hold a credit card here?
  • How many of you have a PAN card here?

Payoneer was one of the best service for anyone in globe to receive payments form various U.S merchant without any delay. By stopping Payoneer in India, they making freelancing community suffocate, and making them handicapped.

A workable solution according to current situation:

It is clearly evident that RBI has enforced many restrictions on receiving foreign funds. Even though Paypal has been partially allowed to resume its operations in India, the person receiving the funds has to comply with several guidelines and disclose all details. Moreover, you are also required to mention your PAN Card number.

All those who are above the age of 18 can apply for a PAN Card, but there are many Bloggers in India who are below the age of 18. These young bloggers who are below the age of 18 usually operate on the name of their parents and mention their parents PAN Card details and receive funds on their name.

However, I won’t advise you to work on the name of your parents because you can yourself apply for a PAN Card. Yes, contrary to public perception, the truth is that a minor can apply for a PAN Card. Whether you are below the age of 18 or above the age of 18, I would advise everyone to opt for a PAN Card as it is one of the best proof of identity. Moreover, now that you have grown-up and have started earning, its better that you handle your expenses on your own which is only possible when you have your own PAN Card and received payments on your own name.

Applying for a PAN Card is an easy process and you can even do it online by furnishing Form 49A online along with the prescribed fee of Rs. 96. Applying for a PAN Card is a fairly simple process and there is no need for you go get this work done through Agents as the Income Tax Department easily issues PAN Card which is directly sent to your address.

I emailed Payoneer team few days back, but it doesn’t seem they are going to resume their services in India any time soon, and with Paypal account, one can’t receive personal payment within India, it’s time to stick to alternatives like 2checkout or ccavenue. Thanks to Karan from Charteredclub for his useful input in this article. Hopefully, in coming days we will see an active and positive step by Indian government to support Indian freelancers and bloggers.

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Article by Harsh Agrawal

Harsh has written 1077 articles.

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{ 20 comments… add one }

  • Akash Deep Satpathi

    Hi! I was still thinking PAN Card cannot be applied by minors. Thanks for letting me know, I would definitely apply it for me. :)

    Reply
  • Hidden

    Hi Harsh,
    Nice to see your post, it was helpful to know about system.

    But I have a doubt (I live in Gujarat), If I want to work for a foreign company as a freelancer, and I am going to receive big amount for it every month, then do I need to make any registration with government here or something? or I have to follow any standard procedure according to our government rules? or I can start working directly without doing anything i mentioned before?

    Because I don’t see any guy who made registration or something for freelancing, and the company I am going to work with is good company and they ask me again and again to find out if I need to follow any standard procedure of government here..

    Your response will be very helpful to me..

    And thanks for the blog.

    Reply
  • kevin

    Now,They are going to impose restrictions on credit card as well ..it is total kill now http://rbi.org.in/scripts/NotificationUser.aspx?Id=7874&Mode=0

    Reply
  • Tarun

    Thank you. But, shall i need to pay anything to wp.org to install to host at godaddy.ok.does blue host also support debit card?

    Reply
    • Harsh Agrawal

      @Tarun
      No… using WordPress software is free…But you need to pay for Hosting + Domain…
      As per my knowledge, BlueHost accept payment via Credit card or Paypal..not sure about debit card…

      Reply
      • Tarun

        Thanks.ok. I think hostgator accepts debit cards and internet banking. Is it right ? I have seen many bad reviews at godaddy, so I planned to stay away from their hosting. I am very excited , you know. Harsh.

        Reply
  • Vijay

    Totally agree with you. I released my ebook recently, at last moment while tesing the checkout flow using ejunkie cart I found my card is not working. Then I had to use two cars one for Indian users and other which can be used globally.. so sad :(

    Reply
  • Ravi Verma

    I was unaware about it. But now got to know about the freelancing payment system little more :)

    I think CCavenue is a good option as it directly credits the your account..
    Recently I applied for hosting on godaddy but canceled due to less comfort hosting environment and requested a refund.

    There was no issue in refund as they said within 3 to 4 Business days. ccavenue credited the full refund to my account.

    Reply
  • Jay Chopra

    The reason that Govt of India got tougher was because these workers were not paying taxes on the income from abroad, they were not reporting it and there was no other way to know who got what without the Pan Card. In USA you cannot open an account with any bank or even PAYPAL without a Social security number or a Tax ID No. So what is the difference. Indians expect everything from the Government without paying for it. If Indians want to emulate west then they also emulate western work standards, western tax paying rituals also. Sorry but that is the truth. The lunch is not free.

    Reply
    • kevin

      now ,we given our PAN card numbers why they are not allowing us to hold money in Paypal ..present scenario is money comes to paypal—>than goes to bank automatically—>than as freelancers has lots of online things than he has to do same things again from card to USD ..why Can’t I use same USD ..why ?? Also,How much government is reporting us what they are doing with our taxes ..Swiss bank investment..ryt ..

      Reply
  • Abhay

    Giving PAN card details as per government regulation is not bad. You are going to earn and you should be honest to abide the laws of country you are living it. And eventually pay taxes as you go to that bracket.

    Reply
  • Syed Qasim

    I belongs to Pakistan. But i always give example of India, that receiving payments of freelance work in India is much easier than Pakistan. But really sad to know about the new change in India. We have no Paypal in Pakistan. That’s why difficult for us to receive payment for us.

    Reply
  • Varun

    Nice Article Sir,
    but in my views PayPal is still a good option for teens like me to use their parents PAN cards and debit cards for buying a domain or hosting account.
    me myself got my domain only with Paypal.

    Reply
  • Adarsh

    I wouldn’t blame the Indian government.

    A lot of people were using Paypal for earning money and spending it on goods they want without paying taxes. So RBI had to step in to prevent black money issues (Yes, if you earn money and don’t pay tax for it or file it in your returns, that’s black money!)

    I am using 2checkout for receiving payments, and I get it within a week. No more hassles. Just go with a payment processor (If you are not running a service business or are getting a few dollars a month it might not be worth using a payment processor).

    Reply
  • TARUN KUMAR

    I am a victim of RBI and their rules. I wants to jump into wordpress from blogger. But I need a credit card to map my domain with wordpress. I can buy a domain with my bank ac at godaddy. Can anyone help me?

    Reply
    • Bradford Risbert

      It would be a great idea to go in for a credit card. It makes it so easy to join any business you wish. namecheap.com is a great hosting site. Very cheap and their service is awesome. They have a live chat platform and queries are sorted out on the spot. I’m presently using their hosting services.

      Reply
    • rakesh kumar

      Godaddy suppport indian debit card , so you can use any standard debit card and purchase domain name and hosting plan.

      Reply
  • Sachin Bille

    This is great piece of writing Harsh!. Glad to see that you have adding more streams to Shoutmeloud by writing about Online Business in India. You are really digging it right direction. Best luck!

    Its true that Indian government really killing the freelancers and bloggers in India by taking such stupid steps. Thanks for taking initiative to make some noise against such stupid acts.

    Reply
  • nimish

    nice article sir,

    what about moneybookers, is it a good option to recieve payments ??

    Reply
  • Rahul

    PayPal is the worst payment gateway ever… they blocked my account telling that I have multiple accounts which is not true…now I cannot create another account with them… I called them hundreds of times…but no help….so I started using a 2 new gateways 2Checkout and ZaakPay (Indian Startup) both are superb and they all accept credit card payments.. also freelance sites support check (I don’t mind waiting). PayPal charges some 3-4 percent + 2.5 percent on currency….I think the best way to receive money from individual clients who know you well is to use a service called xoom.com

    Reply

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