The post office has launched a new small savings scheme for women investors called Mahila Samman Savings Certificate (MSSC). The scheme was announced in the Budget 2023 by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman to commemorate Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav and to encourage women to save and invest for their financial goals.
Features of MSSC
MSSC is a one-time deposit scheme that offers the following features:
- The scheme is available for a two-year period up to March 2025.
- The scheme offers a fixed interest rate of 7.5% per annum, which is higher than most bank fixed deposits.
- The scheme allows partial withdrawal option after six months of opening the account.
- The scheme has a minimum deposit limit of Rs. 500 and a maximum deposit limit of Rs. 2 lakh.
- The scheme can be opened by any woman or girl in her own name or by a guardian on behalf of a minor girl or a woman of unsound mind.
- The scheme can be opened at any post office or any registered bank with KYC documents such as PAN card, Aadhaar card, passport, etc.
- The scheme provides nomination facility at the time of opening the account.
Benefits of MSSC
MSSC is a beneficial scheme for women investors as it offers the following benefits:
- The scheme provides a safe and secure investment option as it is backed by the government.
- The scheme provides a high and guaranteed return on investment as compared to other savings instruments.
- The scheme provides liquidity and flexibility as it allows partial withdrawal in case of any emergency or financial need.
- The scheme provides tax benefits under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, up to Rs. 1.5 lakh per annum.
- The scheme empowers women to take charge of their financial well-being and achieve their aspirations.
Comparison with Other Schemes
MSSC is a unique scheme that caters to the specific needs and preferences of women investors. It is different from other post office schemes such as Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana (SSY), Postal Life Insurance (PLI), etc. in the following ways:
- MSSC is a one-time deposit scheme, whereas SSY is a recurring deposit scheme that requires annual deposits for 15 years.
- MSSC has a shorter tenure of two years, whereas SSY has a longer tenure of 21 years or until the girl child gets married after attaining 18 years of age, whichever is earlier.
- MSSC has a higher interest rate of 7.5%, whereas SSY has a lower interest rate of 7.1% (as of January-March 2023).
- MSSC has a higher maximum deposit limit of Rs. 2 lakh, whereas SSY has a lower maximum deposit limit of Rs. 1.5 lakh per annum.
- MSSC can be opened by any woman or girl, whereas SSY can be opened only by the parents or legal guardians of a girl child below 10 years of age.
- MSSC can be opened at any post office or registered bank, whereas SSY can be opened only at designated post offices or authorized banks.
- MSSC is a savings scheme, whereas PLI is an insurance scheme that provides life cover along with savings.
- MSSC does not require any medical examination or proof of income, whereas PLI requires both for eligibility and premium calculation.
- MSSC does not have any age limit, whereas PLI has an age limit of 18 to 55 years for eligibility.
MSSC is a new and attractive post office scheme for women investors that offers high returns, liquidity, flexibility, safety, security, and tax benefits. It is a suitable scheme for women who want to save and invest for their short-term and long-term financial goals.