Channeling household savings into the formal sector, the cumulative deposit under the Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana has exceeded over Rs 10,000 crore, even though it continues to face large number of dormant accounts.
According to finance ministry data, the total deposits under the PMJDY touched Rs 10,415.84 crore by January 30 with a total 12.94 crore accounts opened.
The sharp rise in the cumulative balance comes just a month after the Centre expanded the direct benefit transfer scheme across the country from January 1, 2015, under which subsidy for cooking gas is directly transferred to the beneficiary’s bank account.
This is expected to give a big boost to the country’s savings rate at Rs 34.8 lakh crore in 2013-14 with 60 per cent contribution from household sector. However, despite expectations of the government that more accounts would register activity as the DBTL launches, 67.4 per cent bank accounts totalling 8.41 crore in number continue to have zero balance. This is however, lower than the earlier levels when nearly 75 per cent of all accounts were dormant.
Banks had also issued 10.99 crore RuPay debit cards while 4.12 crore accounts were also Aadhaar seeded.
According to a senior government official, banks are still working on seeding Aadhaar numbers with accounts that is expected to further increase savings and lower the account dormancy levels.
However, experts said that banks need to be more proactive in getting in touch with subscribers. Chandra Sekhar Ghosh, chairman and managing director Bandhan Financial Services said, “Often the subscribers stay far away from the bank and are unable to go to it for deposits. Banks need to go to the doorstep of such customers after the initial account opening.”