Due to the sharp increase in DBT payments, the government sent benefits such as free rations to the poor. Ninety-eight crore received cash benefits through DBT in 2020-2021, highest on record
Representative image. News18
Direct Transfer Benefit (DBT) payments activated by Aadhaar during the last fiscal year that was affected by the COVID-19[female[feminine The pandemic has saved the government nearly Rs 45,000 crore, bringing the total savings since 2014, when the program was expanded, to Rs 2.2 lakh crore, the Modi government said.
Official government data has been reviewed by News18 for the fiscal year from April 2020 to March 2021.
Officials say this has been achieved by reducing leaks in government programs, eliminating bogus or non-existent beneficiaries from government programs, and sending money directly to genuine beneficiaries’ Aadhaar-linked bank accounts. Prime Minister Narendra Modi said earlier that this was a break from the past.
Speaking two days ago at the “Aadhaar 2.0” conference, MEITY secretary Ajay Prakash Sawhney said that Aadhaar had “acted as a savior” for COVID-19[female[feminine . âAadhaar-enabled DBT payments increased by up to 140% in April 2021 compared to March 2020. They increased again by more than 200% in May 2021 compared to April 2020 levels, which means that the DBT payments by the government in times of Covid, âSawhney mentioned.
Official data reviewed by News18 confirms the sharp increase in DBT cash and in-kind payments through which the government had also sent benefits such as free rations to the poor. The government transferred Rs 5.5 lakh crore to people via DBT in FY2020-21, up 40% from FY20 when the total DBT payment was of Rs 3.8 lakh crore. For this fiscal year so far, Rs 3.4 lakh crore have already been sent to beneficiaries.
Government figures also show that 98 crore people received cash benefits last year through DBT, the highest on record.
Sawhney also said the use of Aadhaar has also increased exponentially during the pandemic. âAadhaar has been donated by residents around 1,400 crore in fiscal year 2020-21 to benefit from services under various programs through Aadhaar online authentication,â he said, describing it as a ‘yeoman service’ rendered using the Aadhaar platform during COVID.
It was the UPA government, which launched DBT on a pilot basis in 2013-14 before the Modi government adopted it and extended it to cover all government schemes in which cash or in-kind benefits are paid to people. In the past, Prime Minister Modi has touted the merits of DBT citing former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi’s statement that out of 100 paise released by the government for the welfare of the poor and needy, only 15 paise make it. to beneficiaries due to leakage and corruption. Modi propagated the “JAM” (Jan Dhan, Aadhaar and mobile bank account) for DBT.
At present, over 300 central government programs are on the DBT-Aadhaar platform, including PM-KISAN, PM Aawaas Yojana, Ayushman Bharat, LPG-PAHAL and MGNREGA, among others. The largest payment under DBT is currently under the Public Distribution System (PDS).
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