Question – What is meant by JAM Trinity? For which sectors of the Indian economy can the JAM Trinity be beneficial? Will it be able to overcome the shortcomings of the existing Public Distribution System? – 8 December 2021
JAM Trinity means combination of Jan-Dhan, Aadhar and Mobile. It is envisaged to assist the Government in the process of direct transfer of subsidy to the target beneficiaries and eliminate middlemen and erosion (its evasion).
Important Elements for JAM:
The Economic Survey divides JAM into three components:
- Identification or first-mile: Identification of beneficiaries by the government. In this context, the Aadhaar number is the basic element. ,
- Transfer or middle-mile: Transfer of funds by the government to the beneficiaries. In this context, Jan Dhan accounts are a fundamental component.
- Reach or Last Mile: Access of funds to the beneficiaries. Mobile connectivity is a basic element here.
Implementation of JAM:
The policy areas that seem to be most suitable for implementing JAM are those where (i) there is significant control of the central government. (ii) Where there are possibilities of corrosion (theft) hence greater potential for large amount of financial savings by eliminating those possibilities.
- Poverty Alleviation Schemes: MNREGA, Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana.
- Health: National Health Insurance Scheme, Universal Health Insurance Scheme.
- Education: Scholarship, National Higher Education Campaign.
- Services: LPG-Pahel, Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, Indira Awas Yojana, Ujjwala Yojana, Fertilizers, Rural Electrification.
- Social Security Schemes: Jan Suraksha Yojana (Atal Pension Yojana, Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana, Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana), National Pension Scheme.
- Skill Based Schemes: National Urban Livelihood Mission, Startup Village Entrepreneurship Programme, Deen Dayal Upadhyay (DDU) Rural Skill Scheme.
- Rights Based: Sukanya Samridhi Yojana, Janani Suraksha Yojana, Indira Gandhi Matritva Sahyog Yojana.
Apart from all this, JAM can be used for implementation if various state level programs at different state levels have effectively dealt with the issues related to first mile, middle mile and last mile.
JAM and Public Distribution System (PDS):
As per the recommendations of the Shanta Kumar Committee, the pilferage (theft) related to the Public Distribution System (PDS) accounts for 45% of the deliverable quantity of all food grains. Thus the JAM Trinity has been found useful as an alternative to direct cash transfers.
Even before JAM, states like Chhattisgarh and Tamil Nadu have ensured effective Public Distribution System (PDS) through interventions such as computerisation, GPS tagging on trucks, social audit, and effective grievance redressal mechanism. JAM based Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) can definitely be seen becoming a reality in future. In order to make adequate preparations for the implementation of JAM-DBT at present, the emphasis must be on infrastructural and institutional reforms. However, at the same time, reforms should also be made to bring transparency and accountability in the traditional Public Distribution System (PDS).