The finance ministry on Monday said about 55 per cent of the total account holders under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY), a flagship scheme of the government to promote financial inclusion, are women. Sharing details of various schemes with special provisions for the emancipation of women on the occasion of International Women’s Day, the ministry said these plans have financially empowered women to lead a better life and chase their dreams of being an entrepreneur. As of February 24, 2021, 23.21 crore accounts, out of the total 41.93 crore accounts opened under the PMJDY scheme, belong to women account holders, the ministry said in a statement. With regard to the Pradhan Mantri MUDRA Yojana (PMMY), it said, about 68 per cent or 19.04 crore accounts with an amount of Rs 6.36 lakh crore (as of February 26, 2021) have been sanctioned to women entrepreneurs under the scheme since its inception.
The Jan Dhan Yojana, which was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his Independence Day address in 2014, was launched on August 28 in the same year. The scheme envisages universal access to banking facilities with at least one basic banking account for every household, financial literacy, access to credit, insurance and pension. In 2018, the government launched PMJDY 2.0 with enhanced features and benefits. Under the new version, the government decided to shift focus from ‘Every Household’ to ‘Every Unbanked Adult’ and free accidental insurance cover on RuPay cards doubled to Rs 2 lakh for PMJDY accounts opened after August 28, 2018. At the same time overdraft (OD) limit too doubled to Rs 10,000 and the facility of OD up to Rs 2,000 without conditions was brought in. As per extant RBI guidelines, a PMJDY account is treated as inoperative if there are no customer induced transaction in the account for over a period of two years. The PMMY was launched on April 8, 2015, for providing loans up to Rs 10 lakh to non-corporate, non-farm small/micro-enterprises. These loans are given by Commercial Banks, RRBs, Small Finance Banks, MFIs and NBFCs.
Under the aegis of PMMY, MUDRA has created three products namely, ‘Shishu’, ‘Kishore’ and ‘Tarun’ to signify the stage of growth or development and funding needs of the beneficiary micro unit or entrepreneur. As far as Stand-Up India Scheme is concerned, the statement said, more than 81 per cent or 91,109 accounts with an amount of Rs 20,749 crore have been sanctioned to women entrepreneurs under the scheme. Stand Up India Scheme was launched on April 5, 2016, to promote entrepreneurship at the grass-root level for economic empowerment and job creation. This scheme seeks to leverage the institutional credit structure to reach out to the underserved section of people such as Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe and Women Entrepreneurs so as to enable them to participate in the economic growth of the nation, it said. The objective of this scheme is to facilitate bank loans between Rs 10 lakh and Rs 1 crore to at least one Scheduled Caste (SC) or Scheduled Tribe (ST) borrower and at least one woman borrower per bank branch of banks for setting up a greenfield enterprise, it added.