Women at a Bhamashah enrolment camp in Rajasthan.(HT File Photo)
Women at a Bhamashah enrolment camp in Rajasthan.(HT File Photo)

Bhamashah scheme proves to be life saver for many in Rajasthan

Under the Bhamashah scheme, e-transactions for 54 schemes are made to beneficiaries whose real time data is available online
By HT Correspondent | Hindustan Times, Jaipur
PUBLISHED ON SEP 26, 2018 06:12 AM IST

Varju Devi from Sindhari village in Barmer district is thankful to the Bhamashah Yojana that proved a life saver for her twins.

Varju Devi, 24, gave birth to the twins in April this year. The babies were premature and had low birth weight. Doctors referred them to Jodhpur for further treatment, she said.

The worried parents took the babies to a private hospital in Jodhpur. Varju Devi, whose husband Ghamnaram Jat is a farmer, said, “The treatment cost was Rs 40,000 but thanks to the Bhamashah card, I was eligible for the Swasthya Bima Yojana and we were able to get free treatment for our babies.”

Magidevi, a resident of Meethda village, 45 km from Barmer, has been able to realise her dream of owning her own house.

Magidevi, 38, said, “My Bhamashah card was linked to my bank account and instalments are directly credited into my account.”

She said that earlier she had to depend on the clerks and the panchayat representative for payments. “Sometimes we had to give bribes for it. But thanks to the Bhamashah card which has not only made the system transparent but I am also getting payments on time.”

Like Varju and Magi, thousands of women in Rajasthan have tasted economic empowerment under the Bhamashah Scheme launched by chief minister Vasundhara Raje on August 15, 2014.

The objective of the scheme is financial inclusion, women empowerment and effective delivery of cash and non-cash benefits to beneficiaries in a transparent manner.

Under the Bhamashah scheme, e-transactions for 54 schemes are made to beneficiaries whose real time data is available online. Cash and non-cash benefits of public distribution system (PDS), student scholarships, payments under MGNREGA and social security pensions, Indira Awas Yojana, CM BPL Housing Scheme, Janani Suraksha Yojana and others are routed through Bhamashah Scheme.

Prof Vijay Vir Singh from the economics department at the University of Rajasthan is all praise for the Bhamashah Scheme. “The scheme has empowered women and it has removed middlemen. Earlier money used to be siphoned off by them. Now the beneficiaries directly get money into their bank accounts and there is no leakage.”

Sampo Devi, 60, of Madoni village in Bharatpur district would agree.

“My bank account is linked to my Bhamashah card and my pension is deposited directly into my account. Earlier I would not get the entire money but now it is smooth,” says Sampo Devi, a widow who lives alone.

Raj Kumari Devi from Rarah village availed of the Bhamashah health insurance scheme benefit for treatment of her son.

“My 17-year-old son Rishi had an ear problem and doctors suggested us to go to Jaipur for an ear operation. Thanks to the Bhamashah health insurance scheme, my son’s operation was done free in Jaipur.”

Under the Bhamashah scheme, 1,65,50,732 families in the state have been enrolled with 6,10,94,128 members.

A total of 47,02,80,269 transactions have taken place under the scheme amounting to Rs 21,480 crore.

During her Rajasthan Gaurav Yatra, Raje has often said women are her strength and being a woman chief minister she is aware of the challenges and problems they face and so she has taken steps to empower women.

At a public meeting in Jhunjhunu, Raje said, “I have for the first time made women the head of the family. I have given them economic independence. I have made schemes for them from birth to old age. Money of government schemes is being deposited cent percent in their bank accounts. Our women have been empowered.”

Akhil Arora, principal secretary, information technology & communication, said, “With over 47 crore transactions worth more than Rs 21,000 crore and benefiting 6 crore residents, the Bhamashah Yojana today is not just the biggest DBT Scheme of the nation, but is an example for all to follow.”

To take this further, he said, more than 20 lakh people have gone digital in the last 3 weeks with smart phones under Bhamashah Digital Parivar Yojana. “This has enabled a new paradigm where people will be able to take all benefits and services from the government through apps without any manual intervention of any manner.”

Recently the government launched the Bhamashah Digital Parivar Yojana for 1 crore families covered under the National Food Security Act and is giving them Rs 1000 each for buying a smart phone and activating data plan.

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