Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana scheme is a popular small deposit scheme, which was launched by the Government as part of its “Save The Girl Child” or “Beti Bachao Beti Padhao” campaign.
The scheme offers an interest rate of 7.6 per cent and comes with a lot of income tax benefits.
It gives income tax rebate under Section 80C of the Income Tax 1961, also the returns under the scheme as well as the maturity scheme are exempted from tax.
A Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana account can be opened any time after the birth of a girl till she turns 10 years old, by the guardian. The account can be opened in any post office or authorised branches of commercial banks.
How to open a Sukanya Samriddhi account
The government had notified rules related to the scheme through a notification in December 2019. Under this, a Sukanya Samriddhi account can be opened by the natural or legal guardian in the name of the girl from her birth till she turns 10.
Also only one account can be opened for the girl child under the scheme. A maximum of two accounts can be opened for two female children in one family as per the rules.
The birth certificate of the girl in whose name the account is opened should be submitted by the guardian at the time of the opening of the account in the post office or bank, along with other documents relating to identity and residence proof of the depositor.
Minimum and maximum balance required for an account
The account can be opened with an initial deposit of Rs 250 and thereafter, any amount in multiple of Rs 50 can be deposited, subject to the condition that a minimum of Rs 250 will be deposited in a financial year, but the total money deposited in an account on a single occasion or on multiple occasions will not exceed Rs 1,50,000 in a financial year.
Deposits in the account can be made till a period of 15 years from the date of the opening of the account. So, for a nine-year-old, deposits have to continue till the child turns 24 years of age.
The Sukanya Samriddhi investment matures in 21 years. However, deposits are only made till 15 years. So, if the account has been opened when the girl child was nine-years old, then it will mature when she will turn 30.
Therefore between ages 24 and 30 (when the account matures), the account keeps earning interest on the balance.
If the minimum amount of Rs 250 is not deposited during a single financial year, then it becomes a defaulted account. A defaulted amount can be revived before completion of 15 years by paying the minimum deposit of Rs 250 and also an additional Rs 50 as penalty amount for each year.
Even if a defaulted account is not activated, then all the deposits in it will continue to earn the interest rate applicable to the scheme till the closure of the account.