DBT Leads to ₹ 50,000-cr Sav­ings for Govt in 3 Years

The Economic Times - - Pure Politics - Aman.Sharma@ times­group.com

New Delhi: Sav­ings due to Di­rect Ben­e­fit Trans­fer (DBT) over the last three years have touched ₹ 50,000 cr as on De­cem­ber 31, 2016, as per lat­est gov­ern­ment fig­ures. This amount is equiv­a­lent to the sub­sidy paid out­un­derDBTinth­is­fi­nan­cia­lyear,im­ply­ing nearly a year’s sub­sidy was saved.

“The sav­ings fig­ure is ex­pected to sig­nif­i­cantly rise fur­ther in the next fi­nan­cial year as­the­gov­ern­men­twill­be­bringin­ga­to­talof 533 cen­tral pay­out schemes in 64 min­istries un­der the DBT mech­a­nism by March 31, 2018 as per the di­rec­tions of PM Naren­dra Modi,” a top gov­ern­ment of­fi­cial told ET. Presently, 84 schemes in 17 min­istries are cov­ered un­der the DBT, up from 34 schemes as on March 31, 2015. “Un­der UPA, the talk was only about big scams and sev­eral lakh crore­ru­peesof losses.Thereisnoscam­now ...in­stead we have saved nearly ₹ 50,000 cr by cred­it­ing the sub­sidy amounts di­rectly in the bank ac­counts of the cor­rect ben­e­fi­cia­ries and elim­i­nat­ing ghost ben­e­fi­cia­ries,” thetopof­fi­cial­added.Near­ly33crorepeo­ple re­ceive var­i­ous sub­si­dies di­rectly in their bank ac­counts now through DBT.

As per gov­ern­ment’s in­terim fig­ures as on De­cem­ber 31, the cu­mu­la­tive DBT sav­ings stan­dat ₹ 49,650cr,pending­in­for­ma­tion­from manys­tates.Thetop­gov­ern­mentof­fi­cial­pit­ted this fig­ure against the one of ₹ 48,860 cr of sub­sidy trans­ferred through DBT in this fi­nan­cial year till De­cem­ber 31, 2016. The to­tal DBT pay­out since 2014 till date has been ₹ 1.6 lakh cr. “This im­plies that nearly one year of to­tal sub­sidy pay­out has been saved by the gov­ern­ment through DBT,” the of­fi­cial said. Though the DBT mech­a­nism started in 2013 To­tal pay­out through DBT in 2016-17 till De­cem­ber 31. Sav­ings equal a year’s pay­out Schemes un­der DBT to be in­creased from 84 to 533 by March 31, 2018

un­der the UPA on a pi­lot ba­sis, it took off in a ma­jor way only un­der Modi gov­ern­ment after the LPG sub­sidy scheme (Pa­hal) was com­mencedthroughtheDBTmech­a­nis­min Novem­ber 2014. “We saved ₹ 15,192 cr in 201415, ₹ 20,951 cr in 2015-16 and nearly ₹ 14,000 Cr in 2016-17 till De­cem­ber 31, 2016 through DBT,” the of­fi­cial said.

The gov­ern­ment says it has saved al­most ₹ 14,000 cr in its Pub­lic Dis­tri­bu­tion Scheme (PDS) by delet­ing 2.33 cr ra­tion cards so far and bet­ter tar­get­ing of ben­e­fi­cia­ries through DBT. ₹ 7,633 cr is cited as the sav­ings in the MGNREGS scheme by the gov­ern­ment so far. ₹ 399 cr is cited as sav­ings in the Na­tional So­cial As­sis­tance Pro­gramme. The big­gest sav­ing of ₹ 26,408 cr is cited in the LPG PA­HAL scheme, in­clud­ing ₹ 4,824 Cr in the first nine months of this fi­nan­cial year. The LPG sub­sidy Prad­han Mantri Ujjwala Yo­jana, Atal Pen­sion Yo­jana, PM Su­rak­sha Bima Yo­jana and PM Jee­van Jy­oti Bima Yo­jana, Aam Aadmi Bima Yo­jana, PM Crop In­sur­ance Scheme and PM Gramin Awas Yo­jana

pay­out qual­i­fies as the world’s largest cash trans­fer pro­gramme, Cen­tre claims. The gov­ern­ment is stick­ing to its guns on the LPG sub­sidy sav­ings fig­ure de­spite the Comptroller and Au­di­tor Gen­eral of In­dia (C&AG) pok­ing holes in the same in a re­cent re­port say­ing the sav­ings were “ex­ag­ger­ated”. C&AG said the gov­ern­ment had as­sumed that the 3.11 cr blocked or in­ac­tive cus­tomers would have availed 12 sub­sidised cylin­ders apiece rather than only 6 cylin­ders as per na­tional av­er­age per capita con­sump­tion of cylin­ders. The ma­jor schemes new on DBT plat­form over the next one year will in­clude Prad­han Mantri Ujjwala Yo­jana, Atal Pen­sion Yo­jana, PM Su­rak­sha Bima Yo­jana and PM Jee­van Jy­oti Bima Yo­jana, PM Crop In­sur­ance Scheme and PM Gramin Awas Yo­jana.

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