Govt launches Mahila Samman Savings Certificate (MSSC) Scheme for women, Know its better than Bank FD or not

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On July 19, 2023, Punjab National Bank (PNB) introduced the Mahila Samman Savings Certificate (MSSC) scheme for 2023, a small savings initiative aimed at encouraging women to save money. This scheme offers an attractive annual interest rate of 7.5 per cent. Please share your thoughts in comment section below.

The government recently permitted all public sector banks and qualified private banks to participate in the scheme, and PNB became the fifth bank to offer it. Previously, the scheme was exclusively available through post offices until June 27, 2023, when it was extended to include public sector and qualified private banks.

Only women are eligible to invest in the MSSC scheme, either for themselves or on behalf of a minor girl. The scheme remains open for investments until March 31, 2025.

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Features of MSSC

  • Who can invest in MSSC?

Only women can invest under this scheme, either for themselves or on behalf of a minor girl.

  • When can I invest in MSSC?

The scheme is open till March 31, 2025.

  • What is the minimum investment amount?

The minimum investment amount is Rs. 1,000.

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  • What is the maximum investment amount?

The maximum investment amount is Rs. 2 lakh.

  • What is the interest rate on MSSC?

The interest rate on MSSC is 7.5 per cent per annum, compounded quarterly.

  • What are the tax implications of MSSC?

Interest earned on MSSC is taxable as per the income tax slabs.

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  • What are the withdrawal rules for MSSC?

You can withdraw your entire investment from MSSC after the maturity period of two years. You can also withdraw up to 40 per cent of the eligible balance after the first year, before maturity.

Premature account closure is allowed only in special cases, such as the accountholder’s death, compassionate grounds like medical emergencies, or the guardian’s demise.

  • What are the other features of MSSC?
  • MSSC is a safe investment as it is backed by the government of India.
  • MSSC offers a higher interest rate than many other small savings schemes.
  • MSSC can be opened at any post office or bank.

The maturity period for MSSC is two years from the date of deposit. Nonetheless, account holders can withdraw up to 40 per cent of the eligible balance after the first year, before maturity, by submitting Form-3. Premature account closure is permitted only in specific cases, such as the accountholder’s demise, compassionate grounds like medical emergencies, or the guardian’s passing.

MSSC vs FD

Bank fixed deposits (FDs) and Mahila Samman Savings Certificates (MSSC) are both popular investment options for women. Here is a comparison of the two schemes:

FeatureBank FDMahila Samman Savings Certificate
Who can investAnyoneOnly women, either for themselves or on behalf of a minor girl
Minimum investmentVaries from bank to bankRs. 1,000
Maximum investmentVaries from bank to bankRs. 2 lakh
Interest rateVaries from bank to bank7.5% per annum, compounded quarterly
Maturity periodVaries from bank to bank2 years
Withdrawal rulesCan be withdrawn before maturity, but may have to pay a penaltyCan withdraw up to 40% of the eligible balance after the first year, before maturity
Tax implicationsInterest earned is taxable as per the income tax slabsInterest earned is taxable as per the income tax slabs
LiquidityMore liquid than MSSCLess liquid than bank FDs
SafetyBacked by the bankBacked by the government of India

Key differences between bank FDs and MSSC

FeatureBank FDMahila Samman Savings Certificate
Interest rateVaries from bank to bank7.5% per annum, compounded quarterly
Maturity periodVaries from bank to bank2 years
Withdrawal rulesCan be withdrawn before maturity, but may have to pay a penaltyCan withdraw up to 40% of the eligible balance after the first year, before maturity
LiquidityMore liquid than MSSCLess liquid than bank FDs
SafetyBacked by the bankBacked by the government of India
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