In an effort to expand the child saving scheme, government has reduced the minimum annual deposit requirement for accounts under Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana to Rs. 250 from Rs. 1,000 earlier.
The government has amended the Sukanya Samriddhi Account Rules, 2016 for the purpose. The minimum initial deposit to open the account has also been reduced to Rs. 250. Till November 2017, more than 1.26 crore accounts have been opened across the country in the name of girl children, securing an amount of 19,183 crore rupees. The interest rate on Sukanya Samriddhi account is revised every quarter, just like other small savings schemes and PPF. For the July-September quarter, the rate has been fixed at 8.1 per cent.
Under the scheme, a parent or legal guardian can open an account in the name of the girl child until she attains the age of 10 years. As per the government notification on the scheme, the account can be opened in any post office branch and designated public sector banks. The deposits made to the account, and also the proceeds and maturity amount, would be fully exempted from tax under section 80C of the Income Tax Act. Deposits can be made up to 14 years from the date of opening of the account. After this period, the account will only earn interest as per applicable rates.