The counters in the banking hall of the state-owned Punjab National Bank stand empty during a strike by bank employees in New Delhi, India. (Photographer: Sondeep Shankar/Bloomberg News)

Jan Dhan Accounts Swell To 32.61 crore

As many as 20 lakh people have joined the modified Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna, taking the total number of account holders in the flagship financial inclusion programme to 32.61 crore as on Sept. 5, according to finance ministry data.

The government earlier this month relaunched PMJDY as an open-ended scheme with higher insurance cover and double the overdraft facility.

The Union Cabinet decided to continue the scheme beyond the four-year period ended Aug. 14 with an aim to take the formal banking system from “every household to every adult”.

During the Aug. 15-Sept. 5 period, the total deposits in 32.61 crore PMJDY accounts witnessed an increase of Rs 1,266.43 crore. The balance in PMJDY accounts was Rs 82,490.98 crore as on Sept. 5.

Under the revamped scheme, accidental insurance cover for new RuPay card holders has been raised from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 2 lakh for new PMJDY accounts opened after Aug. 28. Also, the existing OD limit of Rs 5,000 has been increased to Rs 10,000. Further, no conditions will be attached for OD up to Rs 2,000.

The data also showed that nearly 7.18 lakh people, who opened PMJDY account after August 28, may get the benefit of increased accidental insurance cover of Rs 2 lakh.

Launched in August 2014, the first phase of PMJDY focussed on opening basic bank accounts and RuPay debit card with in-built accident insurance cover of Rs 1 lakh.

Besides, it provided Basic Banking Accounts with OD facility of Rs 5,000 after six months.

Phase II beginning Aug. 15, 2018 was planned to provide micro-insurance to the people and pension schemes to unorganised sector workers through business correspondents.

About 53 per cent of PMJDY account holders are women, while 83 percent of the total accounts are seeded with Aadhaar.