The Department of Posts has launched Five Star Villages, a scheme to ensure universal coverage of postal schemes in rural areas in the country. The scheme will bridge the gaps in public awareness and reach of postal products and services, especially in interior villages.
All postal products and services will be made available and marketed and publicised at the village level, under this scheme. Branch offices will function as one-stop-shop to cater to all post-office-related needs of villagers. The schemes covered under the Five Star include: i) Savings Bank accounts, Recurrent Deposit Accounts, NSC / KVP certificates, ii) Sukanya Samridhi Accounts/ PPF Accounts, iii) Funded Post Office Savings Account linked India Post Payments Bank Accounts, iv) Postal Life Insurance Policy/Rural Postal Life Insurance Policy and v) Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana Account / Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana Account.
If a village attains universal coverage for four schemes from the above list, then that village gets four-star status; if a village completes three schemes, then it gets three-star status and so on.
Initially, the scheme is being launched on a pilot basis in Maharashtra. Based on the success, it will be implemented nation-wide. The entire State of Maharashtra will be covered under the scheme. To begin with, two rural districts for each region have been identified. Akola and Washim in Nagpur Region, Parbhani and Hingoli in Aurangabad Region, Solapur and Pandharpur in Pune Region, Kolhapur and Sangli in Goa Region and Malegaon and Palghar in Navi Mumbai Region have been identified for implementation of the scheme. Fifty villages in each district will be covered during 2020-21. Regional offices will identify the villages to be covered, the department said.
The scheme will be implemented by a team of five Gramin Dak Sevaks who will be assigned a village for the marketing of all products, savings and insurance schemes of the Department of Posts. Required training and infrastructure, covering all schemes, will be provided to all branch offices in identified villages.