Jan Dhan Yojana revolutionised financial inclusion in India, more than 50 cr bank a/cs opened: FM

New Delhi: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday said Jan Dhan Yojana-led interventions and digital transformation have revolutionised financial inclusion in the country, as more than 50 crore people have been brought into the formal banking system with cumulative deposits surpassing Rs 2 lakh crore.

On the ninth anniversary of the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY), which is one of the biggest financial inclusion initiatives in the world, Sitharaman in her message said 55.5 per cent bank accounts have been opened by women, and 67 per cent have been opened in rural/semi-urban areas.

Under the scheme, the number of bank accounts grew 3.4-fold from 14.72 crore in March 2015, to 50.09 crore as on August 16, 2023.

Total deposits too have swelled from Rs 15,670 crore as of March 2015, to over Rs 2.03 lakh crore as of August 2023.

The average deposits in Jan Dhan accounts have increased 3.8 times from Rs 1,065 as of March 2015, to Rs 4,063 in August 2023.

About 34 crore RuPay cards have been issued to these accounts without charge, which also provides for a Rs 2 lakh accident insurance cover.

The zero-balance accounts under the scheme have reduced to 8 per cent of total accounts as of August 2023, from 58 per cent in March 2015.

Sitharaman said, “the 9 years of PMJDY-led interventions and digital transformation have revolutionised financial inclusion in India. With the collaborative efforts of stakeholders, banks, insurance companies, and government officials, the PMJDY stands out as a pivotal initiative, changing the landscape of financial inclusion in the country…”.

Minister of State for Finance Bhagwat Karad said Jan Dhan–Aadhaar–Mobile (JAM) architecture has enabled successful transfer of government benefits in the accounts of the common man seamlessly.

“PMJDY accounts have become the fulcrum of people-centric initiatives like Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) and have contributed towards inclusive growth of all sections of the society, especially the underprivileged,” Karad said.

The PMJDY was launched on August 28, 2014, with an aim to provide universal banking services through the opening of zero-balance bank accounts for every unbanked household, based on the guiding principles of banking the unbanked, securing the unsecured and funding the unfunded.