In India, where a vast majority still lives in information darkness, digital information dissemination on topics of importance like citizen entitlements, financial schemes etc. definitely paves the way towards a society that is socially and financially inclusive of even people living in the fringes. Prem Singh Ahirwara and Ram Singh from Uttarakhand did not dare to open bank accounts for they thought that no bank would open an account without minimum balance amount. Their misconceptions are now getting addressed by Soochna Seva team who are lighting lives with information via Mera App.
In Uttarakhand, only 58% of people have bank accounts, out of which 20% are above 50 years of age. Ram Singh, in his early 60s, resides in the Dabri village. He is an old farmer and a widower with three sons. Four years ago, his eldest son met with an accident that left him with disabilities. He cannot work anymore and the responsibility to take care of him also lies on Ram’s shoulders.
Ram now has to work hard in the fields in order to sustain his livelihood. Unaware of government schemes for the elderly, he did not even have a bank account. Like several other uninformed rural villagers, he was under the perception that one needs to have a huge amount of money to open a bank account. However, Soochna Seva team bunked all these myths and told him about the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana. With support and guidance of the Soochna Seva team, he opened his first bank account to avail benefits and entitlements of the scheme.
In a similar story, Prem was also made aware of financial schemes by the team. He was able to open a bank account; however, the real challenge was to get an Aadhaar card. Everybody in his village applied to get a unique identification number in hopes to avail benefits of these government schemes. However, three months had passed since they applied and nobody in the village had received their cards.
Ahirwar then took up the matter with Soochna Sevaks. Soochna Seva team was under the impression that more than hundred cards that reached Murela Post office have already been distributed.
The team then looked into the case and called the postman Deepchand Gupta and inquired about the delay. He notified that the cards have been already given to BLO, Beeram Singh for distribution. When confronted about non-distribution of cards, BLO Singh accepted his mistake and promised to distribute the cards as soon as possible.
After few days, on their next visit to the village, Soochna Seva team found that the villagers had still not received the cards. The matter was again taken up with the BLO and after repeated requests the BLO sent one of his assistants to the village and the Aadhar cards were finally distributed.