Money & Banking

Jan Dhan accounts see unusual surge in total balance in March

G Naga Sridhar Hyderabad | Updated on April 11, 2021

Defying the normal pattern, total balance in the basic bank accounts under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) accounts is showing a significant spurt.

During the month of March, there was an addition of ₹5,882 crore in the accounts opened under the Centre’s flagship financial inclusion scheme.

The total balance of Jan Dhan accounts stood at ₹1,45,550 crore as on March 31, 2021 with 42.20 crore beneficiaries. In the beginning of the month, the total balance was only ₹1,39, 668 crore.

An analysis of total balance trends shows that generally the increase per month ranges from ₹1,000 crore to ₹1,500 crore.

However, a ₹12,145-crore jump in balance was seen last year from April 2020 to May 2021 due to the special package announced by the Centre under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana during the Covid-induced lockdown.

However, the highest spurt in total balance was in just 20 days of last month (between March 3 and March 31) when the amount went up from ₹1,39,668 crore to ₹1,45,550 crore, as per latest data.

“There has always been a surge in account balances during major election season for the reasons which are yet to be fathomed. We saw this in 2019 general elections and during elections in a few States prior to that,” the Chief Executive of a major public sector bank told BusinessLine.

Assam, Puducherry, Kerala and Tamil Nadu went to the polls recently, while the eight-phased election in West Bengal is yet to end.

New accounts

It is interesting to note that there has been an increase in the number of accounts, too. About 50 lakh new accounts were opened in March 2021.

There was a net addition of ₹25,879 crore in the year under PMJDY with an opening of 4.2 crore new accounts.

Published on April 11, 2021

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