PTI Photo by Vijay Verma
PTI Photo by Vijay Verma

New Delhi: The Congress on Thursday tore apart Prime Minister Modi for taking credit of Jan Dhan Yojana, noting that it was nothing but the Basic Savings Bank Deposit Account (BSBDA) introduced during the UPA regime which was also called “no frills account” or “zero balance account.”

Former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram said 25 crore BSBD account were opened until May 2014, but the Modi government conveniently and deliberately ignores these 25 crore accounts. Why? He called Jan Dhan another ‘jumla’ and an exercise in mass deception.

He asserted that the Jan Dhan accounts were used to launder money after demonetisation as a humongous sum of Rs 42,187 crore were deposited in these accounts. He said Finance Minister Arun Jaitley threatened legal action on November 12, 2016, but the fact remains that nothing was done after the finance secretary said any probe would be only a time consuming process. United ank of India alone had 11.80 lakh Jan Dhan accounts with over 1 lakh “savings.”

Challenging the government to show any benefits to the people, he said the funds were supposed to be cost free for the struggling banks, but the fact is that they were forced to bear the cost of accounts, pointing out that the State Bank of India alone spent Rs 775 crore as on 31.12.2016 to maintain these accounts.

Chidambaram said the government promised life and accident insurance to the Jan Dhan account holders but failed to mention that the Rs 30,000 life insurance applies only to those who opened these accounts between 15 August 2014 and 31 January 2015. The incentive was introduced only to generate record account opening rather than offering a real benefit, he said and challenged the government to give number of persons who got the insurance after an accident or death.

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