In an effort to push consumers and traders towards embracing digital transactions, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Sunday announced the launch of two schemes — Lucky Grahak Yojana and Digi-Dhan Vyapar Yojana. For the next 100 days, starting today, 15,000 people making digital payments will get Rs 1,000 cashback in a daily lucky draw, PM Modi said. He added that there will also be a weekly draw and the prize money will run into lakhs. “A bumper draw will be held on BR Ambedkar’s birthday,” PM Modi said. Under the two schemes, the lucky draw will take place in 100 cities across the country. Traders adopting digital payment methods will get a tax rebate under the Digi-Dhan Vyapar Yojana scheme.
The prime minister was speaking in his monthly radio address to the nation ‘Mann ki Baat’. The prime minister also elucidated why RBI has been frequently updating and issuing fresh guidelines. “Government is taking regular feedback from people and it is alright to make changes according to it ,” he said.
He also said that out of the 30 crore debit/credit cards in the country, 20 crore of these are held by those belonging to lower and middle-income background. “In last few days, cashless transactions have gone up by 200-300 per cent. To give it a push, government has taken a big step,” he said.
Exemplifying the benefits of cashless transactions, PM Modi asserted that they will help in ending the exploitation faced by workers in the informal sector. “In our country, the informal sector is quite big and most of the workers are paid their wages in form of cash. They also face exploitation because of this. Now digital transactions are helping these workers,” said PM Modi.
Speaking on why political parties will not come under the scrutiny of tax authorities for cash deposits in demonetised currency, PM Modi said that he wanted a discussion in Parliament regarding party funding, but the Opposition “did not let the Houses run”. “People are spreading rumours that political parties have free hand but this is not true,” PM Modi said.
The Prime Minister, however, lauded both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha for passage of the Disabilities Bill to secure the rights of disabled and also their honour and dignity. The new law, he said, is in consonance with the spirit expressed by the United Nations.
Terming this war against corruption as “an extraordinary one”, he said the forces involved in “this murky enterprise of perfidy and corruption” have to be defeated as they are devising new tactics to thwart government’s efforts every day. “To counter these new offensives, we too have to devise appropriate new responses and anti-dotes. When the opponents keep on trying out new tactics, we have to counteract decisively since we have resolved to eradicate the corrupt, shady businesses and black money,” he said.
Lauding the public for their support in exposing the wrong-doings of some, who are devising “newer wily ways and means” to counter the fight against corruption, the Prime Minister sought more public support. “Everyday many new people are being taken into custody, currency notes are being seized, raids are being carried out. Influential persons are being caught. The secret is that my sources of such information are people themselves.
“Information being received from common citizens is many times higher than that being obtained through government machinery,” he said, adding that people were taking risks to expose such elements. He asked them to share such information on e-mail address of the government as also on the MyGov App.
Modi also talked about the Benami Property law that came into being in 1988, but neither its rules were framed, nor was it notified and laid dormant for years. “We have retrieved it and turned it into an incisive law against ‘Benami Property’. In the coming days, this law will also become operational. For the benefit of the nation, for the benefit of the people, whatever needs to be done will be accorded our top priority,” he said.
He also wished the people on Christmas and remembered former Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee on his birthday while wishing him good health and long life. Modi also congratulated the Indian Cricket team for its emphatic 4-0 victory over England, as also the performances of some young players like Karun Nair who scored a triple century, K L Rahul for scoring a brilliant 199, besides the leadership provided by Captain Virat Kohli and off-spin bowler R Ashwin. He also complimented the Junior Hockey Team for lifting the World Cup and the Indian Women’s Hockey Team that won the Asian Champions Trophy.
With PTI inputs