- A comprehensive review of the delivery of its 461 schemes by the Centre showed that there has been a saving of Rs 1,557 crore due to implementation of Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) schemes.
About Direct Benefit transfer scheme:
- The Direct Benefits Transfer (DBT) simply involves transferring the subsidy amount and other benefits (called transfers) directly to the beneficiaries’ bank accounts instead of providing it through government offices.
- Transfer means payment made by the government without receiving anything in return from the beneficiary. Subsidies, scholarships are the main example for transfers.
Advantages of DBT:
- The main advantage of the DBT is that leakages are avoided as the government directly provides the fund to the beneficiary. Money is sent into the bank account of the beneficiary.
- Another advantage of DBT is that it helps the government to better target the beneficiary. Here the facilitating mechanism is Aadhaar. Since Aadhaar is the universal ID, government can identity the beneficiary from his Aadhaar details while connecting it with DBT.
The DBT Mission: launch and expansion of the programme
- Though the DBT Mission was launched on January 1st, 2013 with the Planning Commission, later the DBT Mission and matters related it were placed with Cabinet Secretariat from September 2015 onwards.
- Several programmes were added into the DBT platform including Scholarships to students and the NREGS wages.
Widening the coverage under DBT scheme
- The DBT scheme has extended the coverage of programmes. Several central sector programmes like NREGA were brought under the DBT later and now there are 74 schemes under it.
- Besides the extended coverage, definitions of DBT have also expanded over the years. Now, DBT not only encompasses direct transfer of cash benefits, but also in-kind benefit transfers and transfers to the service providers/enablers within the Scheme design.