With the aim of reforming Government delivery system by re-engineering the existing process in welfare schemes for simpler and faster flow of funds and to ensure accurate targeting of the beneficiaries, deduplication, Direct Benefit Transfer(DBT) was started on 1st January 2013.
Bank Account, Aadhaar, and Mobile are DBT enablers and as on date more than 22 crore Jan Dhan Account, more than 100 crore Aadhaar and about 100 crore Mobile connections provide a unique opportunity to implement DBT in all welfare schemes across the country including States & UTs. DBT will bring efficiency, effectiveness, transparency, and accountability in the Government system and infuse confidence of citizen in the governance.
Major Objectives of DBT
- Accurate Targeting
- Reduction of Fraud
- Process Re-engineering of Schemes for the simpler flow of information and funds.
- Greater Accountability
Committees formed for execution of Direct Benefits Transfer
The Government has constituted the National Committee on Direct Cash Transfers chaired by the Prime Minister, to coordinate action on the implementation of the DBT Program. This Committee is to be assisted by the Executive Committee on Direct Cash Transfer chaired by the Principal Secretary and convened by Secretary, Planning Commission.
To ensure orderly and timely implementation, Mission Mode Committees namely, Financial Inclusion Committee, Technology Committee and Implementation Committee on Electronic Transfer of Benefits were also constituted.
Direct Benefit Transfer Division was created in the Planning Commission to provide secretarial service to PMO and act as the Nodal Agency in the implementation of DBT.
Roll out of BDT
Direct Benefit Transfers was rolled out from 1st January 2013 in 43 districts under 26 Schemes pertaining to scholarships, women, child and labor welfare in a phase-wise manner beginning with 20 districts on 1.1.2013, 11 districts from 1.2.2013 and the remaining 12 districts from 1.3.2013. DBT was further expanded across the country on 12.12.2014. 7 new scholarship schemes and Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) was brought under DBT in 300 identified districts with higher Aadhaar enrolment.
At present 440 schemes of 55 ministries are covered under DBT.
This includes the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) and the public distribution system (PDS), two of India’s largest welfare programmes where nearly 90% of beneficiaries are linked to Aadhaar (Aadhaar-seeded).
Categories of schemes covered under DBT
DBT covers the following categories of schemes.
Cash Transfer to Individual Beneficiary – This category includes schemes or components of schemes wherein cash benefits are transferred by Government to individual beneficiaries. Example PAHAL, MGNREGA, NSAP, etc.
In-kind Transfer from Government to Individual Beneficiary – This category includes schemes or components of schemes wherein kind benefits are given by the Government to individuals through an intermediate agency. Typically, the Government or its agent incurs expenditure internally to procure goods for public distribution and make services available for targeted beneficiaries. Individual beneficiaries receive these goods or services for free or at subsidized rates.
For example, in Public Distribution System (PDS), Food Corporation of India (FCI) is the Government agency responsible for procurement, movement, storage and distribution of food grains to Fair Price Shops. FCI issues the food grains at subsidized rates, as fixed by the Government. The rates so fixed do not cover the full economic cost incurred by the Corporation. The difference represents the consumer subsidy for the PDS and is paid to the Corporation by the Government of India.