Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram, on Saturday termed the direct cash transfer scheme as pure magic. Inaugurating the 1,000th branch of the State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur, Mr. Chidambaram said the scheme would ensure that government funds reached the intended beneficiary.

“People have called it a gamechanger, a revolutionary idea, etc. But I say it is pure magic,” said Mr. Chidambaram.

Earlier, when a Central ministry released funds, it could never ensure their delivery to the rightful last-mile beneficiary. Even if complaints were made, it took a long time for them to be redressed, he said. “However, with the direct benefits transfer scheme, money released from Delhi immediately reaches the bank account of the intended beneficiary. It is just like magic,” he said.

“From January 1, 2013, the scheme will be rolled out in several districts across the country and by the end of the year we hope the scheme will cover all districts of the country,” said Mr. Chidambaram.

He, however, urged people to give the scheme some time to work.

“The responsibility of ensuring the success of this scheme rests on the banks and they are fully capable of doing the job like they did in the case of agricultural and educational loans,” he said.

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