The government will undertake a review of the progress made so far in the direct benefit transfer (DBT) programme on January 15 and will also iron out the teething troubles that the programme has faced so far. The programme started in select cities from January 1.
“On January 15, we will analyse all such teething problems and find out ways and means in which it could be further streamlined,” a senior official, directly involved in the process said.
By that time, a clear picture will emerge as to how many people have been benefitted and how much money has actually been transferred through the enabled-mechanism for transfer of assistance and subsidy.
According to officials, among the teething troubles that the roll-out has faced so far in its first week has been the closure of many schools and colleges, which has made seeding bank accounts with aadhaar numbers difficult in some places.
As most of the seven schemes started in the first phase relate to distribution of scholarships, closure of schools and colleges because of winter vacations has come as a hurdle in ensuring that the benefits reach the intended, the officials said.
They, however, refused to elaborate.
To monitor the programme, the government is also planning to develop a weekly scheme-wise, ministry-wise and district-wise review mechanism.
“At present, we are just monitoring 7 schemes in 20 districts. But there have been requests from other departments and districts as well to join the programme, which all would be looked into,” the senior official said. Coverage of beneficiaries under the Unique Identification Authority, seeding of bank accounts with Aadhar numbers and thereafter with the beneficiary database and bank accounts are the other problems being faced in the seamless operation of the programme.
The direct benefit transfer scheme, has been touted as UPA-2’s most ambitious attempt to transfer government subsidies and incentives directly into the bank account of the beneficiaries through the Aadhar platform.
Launching the scheme, Finance Minister P Chidambaram had said that in the second phase, the programme will be rolled out across 11 more districts by February 1 and 12 more districts will be added on March 1, taking the total to 43 districts over the next two months.