GUWAHATI: Nearly 10 lakh students from Classes I to XII who had opened accounts in banks are now waiting for deposits in their accounts as assured by the State government. These students are enrolled in government as well private schools across the State.
Accounts have been opened in the State Bank of India, HDFC Bank and various other banks with zero balance following a directive from the Education department. The directive issued in September, 2020, aims at training children on management of financial skills and inculcating good financial habits on savings.
"Bank accounts are still being opened by students. More than 10 lakh students have already opened their accounts. Initially, there were some issues in opening of zero balance accounts by the banks. All such issues have now been resolved. Accounts are being opened systematically in phased manner," said a source in the Education department.
The State Government has made it mandatory for banks to give accidental benefits to students who have opened their accounts. Banks will have to give benefits such as Internet banking, mobile-banking service, free debit card and joint account holder facility to these accounts holders.
As per the modalities prepared by the State Education department, a natural or legal guardian can open the bank account either on behalf of a minor or jointly with the minor. For accounts of minors below 10 years, the guardians will have to operate the accounts. Those above 10 years can operate their accounts by themselves. Accounts will be opened with zero balance.
"Even though parents are expecting that money will be deposited in the bank accounts of their children, it will take time for these accounts to get credited. No money will be deposited till the Election Code of Conduct is in force. Students and parents can expect something only after a new government takes charge in Dispur in May," added the source.
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