Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana is a savings scheme for the girl child launched as a part of the Government’s 'Beti Bachao Beti Padhao' campaign, in 2015. A Sukanya Samriddhi Account can be opened any time before the girl child turns 10 years old. Under this scheme, a minimum of Rs. 1,000/- and a maximum of Rs. 1,50,000/- can be deposited in a year.
There are a number of benefits of saving through Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana. Let us highlight five of them:
High Interest Rate
Sukanya Samriddhi Account offers an interest rate of 8.6% for current financial year, i.e. FY 2016-17. When compared to other Small Savings Schemes, the interest rate offered by this plan is the highest.
Every year, the Govt. of India declares the Interest Rate for the current Financial Year. Interest on this is compounded yearly, which means that it will be credited yearly. The interest is accrued every month on the lowest balance between 5th and last day of the month.
Income Tax Savings
Income tax is exempted from the contribution to this account under Section 80 C of the Income Tax Act. Exemption on this scheme is available on the interest and also at the time of withdrawal. This scheme is under the authority of Department of Revenue (DOR). DOR will go for a legislative amendment. Moreover, this scheme will also be one of the most tax efficient ones.
Lock-in period is one of the best features of this scheme. Twenty one years is the maturity age of the account and this starts from the date when the account was opened or the Marriage of your Girl Child (either of the earlier one). Make sure that the age of your daughter is 18 years at the time of marriage.
The account cannot be operated after the marriage of your child. Parents are required to go for a premature withdrawal once their girl child attains 18 years of age and this can be done only if you require funds for Higher Education.
Only 50% of the account balance can be withdrawn in case of premature withdrawal at the end of the previous financial year. One can deposit money in the account till 14 years from the date of opening of the account. Moreover, the maturity period of the account is 21 years from the date of opening the account.
Guaranteed Maturity Benefits
When your Sukanya Samriddhi Account reaches the maturity date, the account balance including the interest accumulated will be directly paid to the policyholder (Girl Child in this case). This is primarily required to render financial independence to the Girl child and therefore acts as a efficient tool to empower them in India.
Interest even after Maturity
Sukanya Samriddhi Account gives interest to the policyholder even when the scheme reaches the maturity. A unique feature of Sukanya Samriddhi Account is that the interest is accrued on the account even after it is matured and this keeps on going till it is finally closed by the account holder.
One of the best ways to build up a sufficient corpus for the education of your girl child is to keep aside a major portion of your savings or invest in equities. However, you only need to invest a small portion of the savings in Sukanya Samriddhi Account and reap the benefits in the long run. Looking at the high-interest rate, one can certainly build an adequate corpus to provide a brighter future to your girl child.