APY – Atal Pension Yojana

Atal Pension Yojana is a pension scheme introduced by the Government of India in 2015–16 &  is aimed at providing a steady stream of income after the age of 60 years to all citizens of India.

This social security scheme is mainly aimed at the unorganized sector such as maids, gardeners, delivery boys, etc and was introduced as a replacement to previous government’s Swavalamban Yojana NPS Lite, which wasn’t well accepted by people.
This scheme is regulated and controlled by the Pension Funds Regulatory Authority of India (PFRDA).

Private sector employees or employees working with such an organization that does not provide them pension benefit can also apply for the scheme.

ELIGIBILITY FOR APY

The eligibility criteria for this scheme is –

  • Must be an Indian citizen.
  • Should possess an active mobile number.
  • Must contribute to the scheme for a minimum of 20 years.
  • Should be within the age bracket of 18 years and 40 years.
  • Must hold a bank account linked with his/her Aadhaar.
  • Shall not be a beneficiary of any other social welfare scheme.

PROCEDURE TO APPLY FOR THIS SCHEME

The steps to apply for this scheme are listed below –

  1. Approach the bank branch/post office where your savings bank account is held or open a savings account if you don’t have one
  2. Fill up the APY registration form along with all the required details.
  3. Submit the form to the Bank.
  4. Provide a valid mobile number, if you haven’t already provided to the bank.
  5. Submit a photocopy of your Aadhaar card.

The application form can also be downloaded from the official website of a bank.

MONTHLY CONTRIBUTION FOR ATAL PENSION YOJANA

APY is a periodic contribution based pension plan and promises a fixed monthly pension of Rs 1000/ Rs 2000/ Rs 3000/ Rs 4000 or Rs 5000.

The monthly contribution depends upon the amount of pension you want to receive upon retirement and also the age at which you start contributing.

BENEFITS UNDER APY :

  • APY provides guaranteed pension of Rs 1,000 to Rs 5,000 to the subscribers.
  • This pension scheme is backed by the Indian government and regulated by Pension Funds Regulatory Authority of India (PFRDA). Hence, individuals carry no risk of loss as the government assures their pension.
  • This scheme primarily focuses on the individuals who are employed in the unorganized sector so that they can be financially independent.
  • In case of subscriber’s death, the spouse of the subscriber shall be entitled for the same pension amount till his/her death. In the event of death of both subscriber & the spouse, their nominee shall be entitled to the pension amount accumulated by him till the age of 60 years.

PENALTY FOR DEFAULT IN PAYMENTS

In case there is any default made in making the payments, the following penalties shall be levied :

  • 1 for monthly contributions of up to Rs. 100.
  • 2 for monthly contributions within Rs. 101 and Rs. 500.
  • 5 for monthly contributions within Rs. 501 and Rs. 1000.
  • 10 for monthly contributions of Rs. 1001 and above.

In case of continuous default for 6 months, the pension account will be freezed and if there’s a continuous default for 12 months, the account will get closed and whatever balance is left after the above deductions will be given to the subscriber.

WITHDRAWAL FROM THE SCHEME

In case the subscriber wishes to withdraw from the scheme before the age of 60 years, only contribution plus interest earned will be returned to him & he won’t be eligible to receive the government’s co-contribution or the interest earned on that amount.

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