Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his maiden speech at Red Fort on India’s Independence Day 2014, announced the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY), a National Mission for comprehensive financial inclusion to ensure access to various financial services like availability of basic savings bank account, access to need based credit, remittances facility, insurance and pension to the excluded sections i.e. weaker sections & low income groups.
The aim of this scheme is to remove the financial untouchability which separates people and bring economic equality in the country. It is aimed at benefitting the common man of India by encompassing an integrated approach.
This scheme not only enables the most deprived section of Indian society, often ignored or left at the mercy of the local politician or bureaucrat, to be part of India’s success story but also is a tool to reduce corruption by removing middle men from the process of receiving state benefits.
The scheme was officially launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 28 August 2014 and is run by the Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance.
As a result of the preparations done in the run-up, 15 million bank accounts were opened on the inauguration day. Even more commendable is the fact that although the government policy aimed for zero balance accounts the PMJDY received a cumulative deposit amounting to $1.21 billion till December 2014.
Looking at the success, the government had revised the target for opening of bank accounts under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) from 75 million to 100 million by January 26, 2015 which has already been achieved well before the deadline.