DBT should be made remunerative for banks: SBI Chief

Government needs to make direct benefit transfer (DBT) scheme remunerative for banks and other intermediaries with a view to encourage them to upgrade infrastructure for its successful implementation, SBI chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya said Tuesday.  

PTI| Last Updated: Mar 01, 2016, 20:43 PM IST

New Delhi: Government needs to make direct benefit transfer (DBT) scheme remunerative for banks and other intermediaries with a view to encourage them to upgrade infrastructure for its successful implementation, SBI chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya said Tuesday.

"When we are actually doing the DBTs there is a lot of friction that we have with the government regarding what should be the remuneration on it... No model will work unless it is commercially viable," she said at the Civil Accounts Day 2016 here.

The SBI chief stressed there was a need to appreciate that "there are costs involved for each of the players..."

A sufficient amount of remuneration needs to be given to all the players to make the DBT scheme worthwhile," she added.

Currently, the government transfers subsidy to LPG users as well as to beneficiaries of scholarship and pension schemes directly to their bank accounts using the DBT platform. From April 1, 2016, DBT in kerosene will be rolled out where the users will buy the cooking fuel at market rate but will get financial support directly in their bank accounts.

Remuneration is necessary as the intermediaries are required to upgrade infrastructure facilities, hardware and software to ensure smooth transfer of funds to the beneficiaries.

"Unless we make the access very simple and easy, no matter what we try to do regarding the DBT and other things, it will still be a challenge to cover the population. And to make that access to be very easy, we need to work on infrastructure," she added.

The other challenge, Bhattacharya said, is to retain trained people for work in rural areas.