Zee Media Bureau
New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday launched Jan Dhan Yojana, a mega financial inclusion plan under which bank accounts and RuPay debit cards with inbuilt insurance cover of Rs 1 lakh will be provided to crores of persons with no access to formal banking facilities.
The scheme seeks to provide two accounts to 7.5 crore identified households by August 2018.
A film on 'Financial Inclusion' was screened and the Prime Minister unveiled a Logo and a Mission Document on Financial Inclusion. He has dedicated the mobile banking facility on the basic mobile phone (USSD) to the nation.
Addressing the function, PM Modi said that it is a big record in the history of the banking as well as the insurance sector which has never seen account opening and accidental insurance of 1.5 crore people in a single day.
Modi said that Rs 30 thousand extra life insurance cover will be given for account opened till 26 January.
Stating that economy plays an important role to fight poverty, the PM stressed upon the need to remove financial untouchability to eradicate poverty.
PM lamented that even after 68 years of independence, 68 percent of population is not connected with banking and said that bank account opening is a step towards joining economic mainstream.
Banking for all is the first step in making the poor a part of country's economic growth, he added.
Prior to PM's address, Finance minister Arun Jaitley said that over 10 crore people have no bank account and thus they have no savings.
Thanking the ministries in the Government for their efforts in making this project successful, Jaitley said that the government will strive to cover 7.2 crore families by January 2015.
The PMJDY has been conceived as a national mission on financial inclusion with the objective of covering all households in the country with banking facilities and having a bank account for each household.
The main features of the PMJDY scheme include Rs 5,000 overdraft facility for Aadhar-linked accounts, RuPay Debit Card with inbuilt Rs 1 lakh accident insurance cover and minimum monthly renumeration of Rs 5,000 to business correspondents who will provide the last link between the account holders and the bank.
The first phase of the mission, starting this month, would end in August next year.
The second phase will start from 2015 till 2018, covering aspects such as micro insurance and pension schemes like 'Swavalamban'.
Some of the Phase II activities would also be carried out in Phase I. In addition, the coverage of households in hilly, tribal and difficult areas would be carried out.
While the existing banking network would be geared up to open bank accounts of the uncovered households in both rural and urban areas, the banking sector would be expanding itself to set up an additional 50,000 Business correspondents, more than 7,000 branches and more than 20,000 new ATMs in the first phase, a release said.
With PTI Inputs
First Published: Thursday, August 28, 2014, 16:38