Jan Dhan gets a boost

The government on Wednesday decided to double the overdraft facility in Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) to Rs 10,000 and the accident insurance to Rs 2 lakh, in a move to bring more persons into its financial inclusion schemes.

By Our Special Correspondent
  • Published 6.09.18
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Jaitley in New Delhi on Wednesday. PTI

New Delhi: The government on Wednesday decided to double the overdraft facility in Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) to Rs 10,000 and the accident insurance to Rs 2 lakh, in a move to bring more persons into its financial inclusion schemes.

"To make the scheme more attractive, the government has decided to double the overdraft facility from Rs 5,000 to Rs 10,000," finance minister Arun Jaitley told reporters after a cabinet meeting.

He said the scheme has been a "runway success", and the government has now decided to make it an open-ended one, meaning it will continue indefinitely.

The PMJDY was launched in August 2014 for a period of four years as a national mission for financial inclusion to ensure the access of financial services such as bank accounts, insurance and pensions to the masses.

The move is based on a report submitted by the steering committee of the National Financial Inclusion Mission that had suggested to the government to modify the overdraft facility so that more people avail themselves of the scheme and the per head overdraft amount goes up substantially.

Jaitley said 32.41 crore accounts have been opened under the scheme and as much as Rs 81,200 crore deposited so far. About 53 per cent of the PMJDY account holders are women, while 83 per cent of the accounts are seeded with Aadhaar.

Meanwhile, accident insurance under Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana after August 28 has been doubled and will have a limit of Rs 2 lakh.

Originally envisioned for financial inclusion to all citizens by ensuring that at least one person from every household possesses a bank account, the PMJDY scheme is now being seen by the government as a vehicle to promote entrepreneurship.

Firm foundations

Jaitley said there is no need to worry over the steep fall in the Indian rupee's value against the dollar as the inherent strength of the country's economy will aid in arresting the downtrend.