Centre presses Odisha to have DBT Cell soonest

With the Union Government deciding to expand the scope of the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) platform to all kinds of cash and kind transfers to the beneficiaries though this unique set up, the Union Cabinet Secretariat has asked the Odisha Government to set up a DBT Cell at the soonest.

Union Secretary of the Cabinet Secretariat Sanjay Kumar Srivastava has written to the State Government in this regard.

Srivastava has said that so far 23 State Governments and Union Territories have set up DBT Cells and are taking necessary steps for DBT on-boarding schemes.

The DBT initiative has been a high priority area of the NDA Government and is being regularly monitored by Cabinet Secretary PK Sinha and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

DBT today stands expanded in scope, not only covering cash transfers to the bank accounts of the beneficiaries but also transfer in kind like food grains with Aadhaar-based biometric authentication.

Srivastava said it has now been mandated that all welfare and subsidy-based schemes of the Government of India would be implemented on DBT by March 31, 2017. For all this, all the Ministries of the Union Government have already put in place DBT Cells, said he.

A State DBT Cell would coordinate the efforts of the DBT on-boarding exercises of all the Central schemes.

The State Portal would keep track of target beneficiaries, funds transfer through the Aadhaar bridge and using electronic funds transfer in case of non-Aadhaar transfers, so also cumulative transfers of funds.

So, constitution of a State DBT Cell is mandatory on the part of the State Government. Constitution of an Odisha DBT Cell is still to be done though it is urgently needed.

Now, the Central Government has set up a DBT Mission and the portal www.dbtbharat.gov.in which is an aggregator of all DBT schemes in the country will connect with the DBT Cells of all the States and UTs.

Sources in the Odisha Government said a DBT Cell is being created in the Department of Finance (DoF) ad Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DoEIT) and DoF officials are coordinating in this regard.

A State DBT Cell would be the Government-to-people interface and connect Aadhaar and social media.

Odisha would create State-specific web pages; and DBT-related success stories would be uploaded for people’s knowledge, sources said. A State DBT Cell would start working very soon and share all details with the DBT Mission of the Government of India, said a DoEIT official.