2 crore bank accounts opened for payment to NREGA wage earners

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New Delhi, Jul 25 (UNI) The Finance Ministry has assured full support to Ministry of Rural Development in ensuring opening of bank accounts of all NREGA wage earners to enable transparency in payment of wages.

Finance Minister P Chidambaram in his communication to the Union Minister for Rural Development, Dr Raghuvansh Prasad Singh has said that in the Budget 2008-09, opening of 250 new rural household accounts in each of the rural and semi-urban branches of the scheduled commercial bank has been announced.

The business facilitator or business correspondent model has been expanded to include retired bank employees, ex-servicemen and retired government employees. The Government is also giving focus on the policy of Self-Help Groups Bank-Credit linkage programme to provide bank credit to small businesses.

An important concern of the NREGA Scheme is that every worker is paid his/her wages for the work done expeditiously and correctly.

With a view to address this concern, the Government had decided that payment of wages to the workers will be done only through banks or Post-offices.

In order to facilitate this, the Department of Posts, in collaboration with NIC and BSNL, is also working towards establishing an Electronic Payment System. Post offices in the country have opened more than 110 lakh accounts in the names of the beneficiaries of National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) for timely disbursement of wages.

More than two crore accounts have been opened throughout the country so far, by the banks for NREGA wage earners.

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