The Finance Ministry informed Parliament that more than 55 percent of the approximately 44 crore Jan Dhan bank account users in the country are women.
Minister of State for Finance Bhagwat Karad said in a written reply in the Lok Sabha that there are 43.90 crore beneficiaries of the PMJDY (Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana) account holders in the country as of November 17, 2021.
According to the banks, 24.42 crore of these are female beneficiaries, accounting for 55.60 percent of all PMJDY accounts, he noted.
When asked how many people in Gujarat had benefited from the scheme, he said there are a total of 1.65 crore beneficiaries, with 0.84 crore (51%) of them being women with bank accounts.
On August 15, 2014, the government introduced the PMJDY as part of the National Mission on Financial Inclusion, with the goal of expanding banking penetration, promoting financial inclusion, and ensuring that each household has at least one bank account.
The scheme was extended beyond August 14, 2018, with the emphasis on account opening shifting from "every household" to "every unbanked adult" with some changes. In PMJDY accounts, there is no requirement to maintain a minimum balance.
"The number of new accounts registered under Sukanya Samriddhi Account from April 1, 2018 to October 31, 2021 is 1,42,73,910," Minister of State for Finance Pankaj Chaudhary stated in response to a related question about the SSA.
The top five states having the most SSA accounts are Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, and Madhya Pradesh, in that order.
The bottom five states are Lakshadweep, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Ladakh, Mizoram, and Sikkim. "The size of the population, capacity and inclination of parents to save, and other factors could all have a role in the number of accounts in different states," Chaudhary added.
Since the scheme's inception until October 31, 2021, public sector banks have accounted for 96.24 percent of such account openings, while private sector banks have accounted for 3.76 percent of such account openings.
The minister, however, stated that accounts opened under SSA in various post offices were not taken into consideration when determining the bank distribution proportion.
Parents can start an SSA in the name of a girl child with a minimum deposit of Rs 250 and a maximum deposit of Rs 1.5 lakh per year until she reaches the age of ten.
Only one account can be formed in the name of the girl child, and the money matures once 21 years have passed since the account was opened.
According to data from the National Savings Institute, the interest rate on SSA has declined from 9.1 percent to 7.6 percent since its debut in December 2014 (stipulated for the period April 1, 2020-December 30, 2021).