India’s unbanked population halves to 233 million
Mumbai: India’s unbanked population has more than halved to 233 million in 2015 from 557 million in 2011, according to a report prepared by PricewaterhouseCoopers India for the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) and Payments Council of India (PCI).
The report, released on Tuesday, said the largest fall in India’s unbanked population—a fall of 182 million—came in 2014, the year Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched an ambitious financial inclusion called the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) to ensure every Indian household has a bank account.
After its launch on 15 August last year, the financial inclusion plan had begun with a large number of bank accounts being opened across the country. According to data available on the PMJDY website, as of 7 October, a total of 187 million new accounts have been opened under the scheme, with a balance of over Rs.25,000 crore.
Nearly 40% of the new accounts opened still carry zero balance, the PMJDY data showed.
Currently, PMJDY is in its second phase, under which new customers are being issued life and accident insurance covers.