As a part of its ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’ campaign, the government has launched Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana (SSY), a small deposit scheme for the girl child. After the interest on SSY increased to 8.5 per cent, the scheme becomes more attractive. Assuming that the new rate remains stable, Rs 74,96,802 would be accumulated SSY account at the end of 21 years, if Rs 1,50,000 is invested at the beginning of every year for 15 years.
Some features of Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana you must know:
1. A legal guardian or natural guardian can open an SSY account for a girl child by producing the birth certificate of the child. The account may be opened either in Post Office or in a commercial bank and may also be in the name of an adopted girl child.
2. Only one account may be opened in the name of one girl child and maximum two accounts in the name of two different girl children.
3. Account can be opened just after the birth of a girl child and till she attains 10 years of age. The child must be a resident Indian and remains so to get the SSY benefits.
4. Minimum Rs 250 (earlier it was Rs 1,000) and subsequently, amounts in multiple of Rs 100 may be deposited in an SSY account in a year for 15 years. The maximum yearly limit is Rs 1,50,000 in a financial year. Deposits can be made in lump-sum or in installments and there is no limit on number of deposits either in a month or in a financial year.
5. If more than Rs 1,50,000 is deposited in a financial year in one or more SSY account of a girl child, no interest will be paid on the excess amount and the depositor will have option to withdraw the excess amount.
6. Partial withdrawals are allowed, but maximum up to 50 per cent of balance standing at the end of the preceding financial year may be withdrawn after the account holder attains age of 18 years.
7. Normally, an SSY account gets closed after completion of 21 years. However, normal premature closure is allowed after completion of 18 years of age of the account holder, provided that the girl gets married. The amount may be withdrawn one month before or after three months of the marriage.
8. Both the deposits and withdrawal amounts under SSY are tax free.
9. If the minimum amount is not deposited in an account in a financial year, the account will be treated as ‘Account in Default’ and may be regularised by paying a penalty of Rs 50 per year along with payments of at least minimum deposit amounts for each default years.
10. If a default account is not regularised withing 15 years, the entire deposit will attract the interest rate applicable to Post Office Savings Bank Accounts at the time of its maturity. However, if the default was due to death of the guardian of the child, the account holder will get normal SSY rate.
11. No interest will be credited to an SSY account after completion of 21 years even if the amount is not withdrawn from the account.
12. If you are not satisfied with the service provider, you may transfer a Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana account from one bank to another bank. It can also be transferred to Post Office or from Post office to any bank of your choice.
For that you first find out about convenient branch of a bank where you want to have your account transferred. Then give a written request to your existing bank for account transfer with name of the destination bank, complete postal address of the branch with Pin code, and branch code. Your bank will close the account and issue a demand draft and will send your full details to the bank where you want account to be transferred. You have to follow the instructions of the new bank to open a new account and to get existing benefits of SSY transferred.