The number of operational small savings accounts in the Department of Post as on 30/6/2011 are 264585266 and the amount deposited therein by the common man as on June 2011 is 3728154388 (Rs in thousands)
The number of accounts closed by customers during the last one year is 40950379.
The collections under all small savings schemes are credited to National Small Savings Fund (NSSF) and the opening balance as per Budget Estimates 2011-12 is Rs. 7,99,386.51 crore.
The small savings schemes continue to enjoy investor confidence as the risk-return equation of these schemes is favourable with the benefits of liquidity, accessibility, tax incentives and implicit sovereign guarantee. The Government has taken the following steps to make the small savings schemes more attractive and investor friendly:-
The restriction on opening of more than one account during a calendar month under the Senior Citizens Savings Scheme has been removed with effect from 24th May, 2007.
All categories of pensioners have been allowed to open and maintain ‘Pension Account’ under Post Office Savings Account Rules, with effect from 11th July, 2007.
The penalty on pre-mature withdrawal of deposits under the Post Office Monthly Income Account (POMIA) scheme has been rationalised from 3.5% to 2% on withdrawal on or before expiry of three years and 1% on withdrawal after expiry of three years.
The maximum deposit ceilings of Rs. 3.00 lakh and Rs. 6.00 lakh under the Post Office Monthly Income Account (POMIA) scheme has been raised to Rs. 4.5 lakh and Rs. 9.00 lakh in respect of single and joint accounts respectively.
Bonus at the rate of 5 per cent on the deposits made under Post Office Monthly Income Account (POMIA) Scheme on or after 8th December, 2007 upon the maturity of the deposit had been reintroduced.
The benefit of Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961 has been extended to the investments made under 5-Year Post Office Time Deposits Account and Senior Citizens Savings Scheme, with effect from 1.4.2007.
A website of the National Savings Institute under Government of India, Ministry of Finance has also been launched to facilitate interface with the public through wider dissemination of information on small savings and on-line registration and settlement of investors grievances. The website address is nsiindia.gov.in.
This statement was given by Shri Sachin Pilot, the Minister of State Communication and Information Technology in response to a question in Rajya Sabha today.