Jan Dhan: Zero-balance a/c reduced to 20%; 30 cr families benefitted

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New Delhi: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said zero balance accounts under the Jan Dhan Yojana have come down to 20 per cent from 77 per cent previously.

Speaking at the Conclave on Financial Inclusion by United Nations in Delhi, Jaitley said 300 million accounts were opened under Prime Minister Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY). He said before 2014, financial inclusion was not a centre stage agenda of the government.

Jaitley said, the government launched the PMJDY in a mission mode throughout the country with the help of banks. The minister said 44 per cent of Indian households were earlier outside the banking system.

Jaitley further hit out at the criticism from the Opposition who said 77 per cent of the PMJDY accounts were zero balance. He said the figure today has come down to a little below 20.

He, however, said the real challenge was how to get people to open these accounts, get them to make these accounts operational and how do you incentivise them to really operate these accounts.

Launched in 2014 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana was aimed at providing universal access to banking facilities starting.

Jaitley said these Basic Banking Accounts could get overdraft facility of Rs 5,000. Jaitley said India was substantially an unpensioned society as people could not afford the premiums. He said the government has announced two important insurance schemes and a pension scheme that would be linked to these bank accounts.

Jaitley said these insurance schemes where you pay Re.1 a month and get Rs 2 lakh accident insurance and at a slightly higher premium, someone get a life insurance. The finance minister said Aadhaar legislation has been passed and it will stand test of constitutionality. Jaitley also said untargetted subsidy puts pressure on exchequer.