This year’s budget stands on seven pillars; one is ‘inclusive development’ in which finance minister Mrs Nirmala Sitharaman took significant steps on the road to women’s empowerment. One such step mentioned by our finance minister in this year’s budget 2023 -2024 is the MAHILA SAMMAN SAVING CERTIFICATE SCHEME.
What is the Mahila Samman Saving Certificate scheme?
Mahila Samman Saving Certificate is a small savings scheme to benefit India’s female citizens (women and girls).
Like a fixed deposit scheme, this scheme allows you to deposit a maximum of 2 lakh rupees for a fixed tenure of 2 years till 2025, and you will get a fixed interest of 7.5% on your deposit. The Finance minister also mentioned that this scheme comes with a partial withdrawal option.
About the Scheme
Mahila Samman Saving Certificate comes with a locking period of two years, which means that your money is invested for a maximum of 2 years. There is an option of partial withdrawal in this scheme, which means you can withdraw a part of the money from your deposited amount if required at any time during these two years without any penalty or charges. Still, you cannot withdraw the whole deposited amount before the maturity tenure, which is two years.
The only eligibility of this small savings scheme is that the person should be a female citizen of India of age more than 10 years.
Although the government does not mention the joining procedure of the scheme, the scheme is only announced in the budget speech by our finance minister, and this scheme is yet to be opened to the public.
Benefits of the Mahila Samman Saving Certificate Scheme
- The first benefit of this small savings scheme is that it is a government-backed scheme, which means that your money is safe as the Indian government is the guarantor.
- This provides the best-in-market interest, which is 7.5% for the deposited amount for such a short tenure, which makes it better than various small savings schemes already present in the market, like FD.
- Another good feature of the scheme is that it is a short-tenure scheme, which is two years; this is another feature that makes it stand out from the various schemes as the tenure is very long in other schemes.
- After investing the money in this scheme, the female citizen who opted for the old tax regime can benefit from the deduction under section 80c of the Income Tax Act.
- One of the best benefits this scheme provides you is the facility of partial deduction, which means whenever required, you can withdraw the partial amount of the total deposited amount without paying any charge or penalty.
In the latest budget speech, the finance minister mentioned that this small saving scheme is similar to the FD but with a better interest rate of 7.5%; this is a one-time scheme and is only valid till 2025. and you can deposit a minimum of as low as rs 100 and a maximum of 2 lakh rupees.
The eligible female applicants can avail of this scheme through their respective banks and post offices. The banks that are currently offering this scheme are Bank of Baroda, Union Bank of India, Canara Bank, Bank of India and Punjab National Bank.
Mahila Samman Saving Certificate Scheme was introduced to empower women, and it is a great initiative by the government to provide a platform for women to be involved economically in the growth of the country and to be a part of financial inclusion while availing all the benefits provided by the government under its scheme.
Can I apply for the scheme after 2025?
As mentioned by the finance minister in the budget speech, this is a one-time speech only for women and girl children, and the scheme’s validity is 2025. So, for now, it is clear that you cannot avail the benefits of this scheme after 2025.
Can a female person open two or more accounts under this small savings scheme?
It is not mentioned by the government how many accounts a person can open under this scheme, But at first look, it seems that the government will not allow a person with more than one account under this scheme.