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Direct Benefits Transfer Scheme to Start From 1 January 2013

ABC Live
Monday, 31 December 2012

 New Delhi (ABC Live)   A decision was taken in the meeting of the National Committee on Direct Cash Transfers held by the Prime Minister that Direct Benefit Transfers will be rolled out from 1 January 2013 in 43 identified districts.

The purpose of Direct Benefits Transfer is to ensure that benefits go to individuals bank accounts electronically, cutting down delays and diversions.

A lot of preparatory has been done and a lot of work is ongoing in connection with the rollout. Secretaries and their officers have visited all 43 districts to assess the preparedness for rollout of Direct Benefits Transfer.

A meeting of District Collectors was held on 13 December 2012 to inform them about the steps to be taken for timely rollout of Direct Benefits Transfer. Review meetings have been taken by the Prime Minister to ensure preparations are moving ahead smoothly.

What is Direct Benefits Transfer and what does it cover:

1.      Government will transfer cash benefits like scholarships, pensions, NREGA wages, etc. directly to the Bank or Post Office Accounts of identified beneficiaries under the Direct Benefits Transfer (DBT) programme. The shift to this would done in a phased, time-bound manner after ensuring that the necessary systems are in place for Direct Benefits Transfer.

2.      Direct Benefits Transfer will not be a substitute for delivery of public services which would continue to take place as per the normal delivery channels.

3.      Direct Benefits Transfer will not replace food with cash under the Public Distribution System. The Government is committed to legislating the National Food Security Act.

What does Rollout on 1.1.2013 mean in practice:

4.      For the rollout beginning on 1.1.2013, 43 districts in 16 States have been identified for the first round of Direct Benefits Transfer under 26 selected schemes. The selection of 43 districts has been done on the basis of coverage of bank accounts and Aadhaar.

5.      The rollout has been phased based on:

(a)              The next instalment being due either on 1.1.2013 or at a later date.

(b)              The list of beneficiaries being digitized in the district concerned.

(c)              The opening of bank accounts for beneficiaries in the district concerned.

(d)              Enrolment for Aadhaar numbers in the district concerned.

(e)              Seeding of bank accounts with Aadhaar numbers in the district concerned.

(f)               Availability of funds.
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