Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana: Eligibility, Benefits and More
The Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana (SSY) is a flagship small-savings scheme launched by the government of India in 2015. The scheme aims to provide a saving option for the welfare of the girl child under the “Beti Bachao Beti Padhao” (Save Girl Child, Educate Girl Child) initiative. Sukanya Samriddhi Scheme eligibility is inclusive and benefits all sections of society and investors.
The main objective of this scheme is to encourage parents of every girl child to invest in their daughter’s education. The government offers higher interest rates and tax savings under this small savings scheme. The current interest rate on SSY is 7.6% per annum. Read on to learn more about the Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana, its benefits, eligibility criteria, and more.
Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana Eligibility
Any girl child aged 10 or below is eligible for investment under the Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana. Let us look at the Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana eligibility criteria in detail:
For the girl child:
- There is no minimum age for Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana accounts.
- The child must be under 10 years of age. However, a grace period of one year is available.
- Only one Sukanya Samriddhi account can be opened per child.
- The Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana eligibility applies only to resident Indians. NRIs are not eligible to invest in the scheme.
- In the event that the status of a child becomes Non-Resident after opening the account, the parent or guardian must inform the bank within one month of the change. There is no interest paid on the account from this date till the closure of the account.
Only the biological parent or legal guardian of a child can open the Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana account on behalf of the child. Other family members are not eligible to invest in the name of the child.
The key points to keep in mind while opening the Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana are:
- You can open a Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana account with any commercial bank or India Post with a minimum deposit of Rs. 250.
- The maximum deposit you can make in the account is Rs. 1,50,000 per financial year.
- A minimum deposit of Rs. 250 must be made in the account every year. In case the minimum amount is not deposited in any particular year, a penalty of Rs. 50 is levied per year.
- The current interest rate applicable to the scheme is 7.6% per annum.
- The maturity period of the scheme is 21 years from the date of account opening or till the time the account holder gets married, whichever is earlier.
- The parent/legal guardian of the child can make deposits in this account for 15 years from the date of account opening. After 15 years, the deposited amount only earns interest at the prevailing rate.
Documents Required for Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana
You need to furnish the following documents to open a Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana account:
- Birth certificate of the child as age proof
- Identity proof of the parent/guardian
- Proof of address (current and permanent address) of the parent or guardian
- PAN card copy and other government-issued ID proof for KYC of the parent
You can open the account offline by visiting any branch of authorised commercial banks or an India Post office branch.
The scheme forms are available at all banks and post offices. You can fill out the form, submit KYC documents, and make the payment by cheque, cash, or demand draft.
After the application is processed, your account is opened and activated. You will receive a passbook with your account number and details of the deposit, applicable interest rate, etc.
You can also download the form from RBI or the post office website, fill in the details, and then visit the bank or post office. After opening the account, you can make online deposits into the account using the IPPB (India Post Payments Bank) app.
On the app, you can set up a standing instruction for a specific amount to be transferred automatically into your Sukanya Samriddhi account. The process is simple and easy to set up in a few minutes.
How Many SSY Accounts can Parents Open?
A parent or legal guardian can open a maximum of two accounts under this scheme for two children. In the case of twins or triplets, a third account is permitted. To summarise, only one account per child is available, with a maximum of two accounts per household.
Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana Benefits
The government of India designed the Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana accounts to be of financial benefit to the account holders. Here are some of the benefits:
- Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana is a good investment option for parents to invest in a girl child’s higher education. The scheme is safe since it is backed by the government and offers a guaranteed fixed return.
- The long-term nature of the scheme ensures that you save consistently towards the educational goal of your child without any interruptions.
- You can enjoy tax benefits under Section 80 C of the Income Tax Act for contributions made to the scheme every financial year.
- Further, the interest from the account and withdrawal on maturity are completely tax-exempt.
- Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana accounts can be transferred between banks or post offices anywhere in India on payment of nominal fees of Rs. 100.
Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana Amount Withdrawal
- Complete premature withdrawal is permitted only upon the account holder’s demise and not otherwise.
- Partial withdrawal:
- There is a possibility that a child secures admission to a college before the scheme’s maturity. In such cases, partial withdrawal is allowed to fund the college fee and related expenses.
- The account holder must be 18 years of age or have cleared standard 10th.
- Applicants need to provide relevant documents for proof of admission, the fee payable, etc. Withdrawal is limited to the fee amount to be paid for the educational course.
- Withdrawal can be in a lump sum or in instalments for up to five years.
- Every year only one withdrawal is permitted from the account.
Also Read: Atal pension yojana tax benefits
Education is the best gift you can give to your daughter. As a responsible parent, planning your daughter’s education is a stepping stone to ensuring her success and happiness. Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana is an excellent scheme to save and invest systematically to fund your child’s educational and career aspirations. The scheme gives you 100% safe tax-exempt, and guaranteed returns. The long tenure ensures the funds stay locked for the goal and are not utilised for any other purpose.
How many years do I need to pay for Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana?
You need to contribute to the scheme for 15 years. The scheme is valid till 21 years from the date of opening of account or when the girl gets married. After 21 years, withdrawal is mandatory.
Can parents make a withdrawal from the Sukanya Samriddhi Scheme?
The maturity amount is paid only to the account holder/girl child. Partial withdrawal is allowed for higher education after supporting documents for fee payment are submitted. A maximum of 50% of the previous financial year is permitted.
Who can open a Sukanya Samriddhi Account?
Only biological parents/legal guardians can open a Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana account on behalf of the child. The child and the parent must both be resident Indians.
Is there a minimum age for Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana?
No, there is no minimum age to open a Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana account for a girl child.