Progress of National Savings
National Savings Schemes of Government of India provide complete security of investment, offer attractive rate of interest and are available to the investors through about 1,56,000 Branches of Post Office Savings Bank and the facility to save in 15 Year Public Provident Fund and Senior Citizen’s Savings Scheme is also available with selected branches of State Bank of India and its associated banks, other nationalized banks and some private banks. The schemes are very popular among the masses due to their attractive features. Gross collections in National Savings Schemes during the year 2012-13 were Rs. 1,96,721.19 crore, excluding collections made in Public Provident Fund and Senior Citizen’s Savings Scheme by the banks.
National Small Savings Fund
All deposits received under National Savings Schemes are credited to the National Small Savings Fund (NSSF) – a public account established w.e.f. 1.4.1999. All withdrawals by the depositors are made out of the accumulations in the fund. The balance in the fund is invested in special securities of the State and Central Governments as per the norms decided by the Central Govt. from time to time. With effect from 1.12.2011, minimum 50 % of the net collections in a State or Union Territory with legislature are being invested in special securities issued by the concerned State or Union Territory Governments. The remaining fund is invested in Central Government securities or lent to other Union / State Governments or in securities issued by infrastructure companies or agencies fully owned by the Central Government.
To facilitate the work of popularization of National Savings Schemes and securing investment from the public, authorized agents are appointed by the State Governments. Mahila Pradhan Kshetriya Bachat yojana Agency is meant for women agents only who canvas and secure deposits under 5 Year Recurring Deposit account and Standardised Agency System agents promote and secure investment for other savings schemes. To make savings easy and automatic for salaried people, Pay Roll Savings Group are formed in public and private sector establishments to save regularly and directly from their salaries. Extra Departmental Branch Post Masters help mobilizing savings in rural areas. To inculcate the habit of thrift among the students, School Savings Banks called ‘Sanchayikas’ are established in schools. National Savings Institute provides support by way of training, guidance and motivation to these extension agencies.