New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to announce benefits for about 32 crore Jan Dhan account holders in his Independence Day speech on Wednesday to provide a boost to the government’s financial inclusion drive, said people familiar with the matter.
There could be a doubling of overdraft facility to ₹ 10,000 under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) account holders as part of the government’s effort to fund the unfunded, they said. The government may also announce attractive micro insurance scheme on the occasion, the people said. The free accident cover under the RuPay Card holders could be increased from ₹ 1 lakh.
The Phase II of PMJDY will come to an end on 15 August, and the scheme would be due for a revamp with further goals, the people said, adding that the prime minister’s I-Day speech would be the best platform to make the announcement.
PMJDY, the flagship financial inclusion drive, was launched in August 2014. The first phase ended on 14 August 2015 was focussed on opening basic bank accounts and RuPay debit card. In the last four years, 32.25 crore PMJDY accounts have been opened with ₹ 80,674.82 crore outstanding balance.
In addition, the government may raise the pension limit under Atal Pension Yojana, announced in 2015-16, to up to ₹ 10,000 per month from the existing slab of up to ₹ 5,000.
In order to address the longevity risks among the workers in the unorganized sector, and encourage them to voluntarily save for retirement, the government had started the Swavalamban Scheme in 2010-11. However, coverage under Swavalamban Scheme is inadequate mainly due to lack of clarity of pension benefits.
The Atal Pension Yojana was focussed on all citizens in the unorganized sector, who would join the National Pension System (NPS) administered by the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) and who are not members of any statutory social security scheme.
Under the Atal Pension Yojana, the subscribers would receive the pension of ₹ 1,000-5,000 per month at the age of 60 years, depending on their contributions.