Government Makes Jan Dhan Scheme Open-Ended With More Incentives
The government on Wednesday decided to make the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana an open-ended scheme in an attempt to encourage more people to open bank accounts.
In view of the “runaway success” of the scheme, it has now been decided to make it open-ended with more incentives, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley told reporters after the Union Cabinet meeting. The flagship financial inclusion scheme was launched in August 2014 for a period of four years.
Jaitley -- who was briefing the media for the first time since resuming office on Aug. 23 after a four-month break for undergoing a kidney transplant -- said the over-draft limit for account holders has now been doubled to Rs 10,000. The free accident insurance cover for those opening Jan Dhan accounts after August 28 too has been doubled to Rs 2 lakh.
There will be no conditions attached for over-draft of up to Rs 2,000. Also, the upper age limit for availing the facility has been hiked to 65 from 60 years previously.
There are approximately 32.41 crore Jan Dhan accounts having a total deposit balance of Rs 81,200 crore. About 30 lakh people have so far availed the over-draft facility.
It has been decided to continue the flagship financial inclusion programme PMJDY with focus on opening account from every household to every adultFinance Minister Arun Jaitley
The pipeline of Jandhan-Aadhaar-Mobile (JAM) scheme will continue to provide the necessary backbone for coverage of these activities and thereby accelerating the pace of digitised financially included and insured society, an official release said.
Launched in August 2014, the first phase of the PMJDY scheme was focused on opening basic bank accounts and RuPay debit card with inbuilt accident insurance cover of Rs 1 lakh. Besides, it provided Basic Banking Accounts with overdraft facility of Rs 5,000 after six months
The second phase, beginning Aug. 2015, planned to provide micro-insurance to the people and pension schemes to unorganised sector workers through Business Correspondents. This phase ended last month.
Jaitley said 53 percent of the PMJDY account holders are women, while 83 percent of the total accounts are seeded with Aadhaar.