Unused saving schemes money for elderly welfare

New Delhi, July 10 (IANS) The huge amount of money lying "unclaimed" in saving schemes will be utilized especially for the welfare of senior citizens, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said Thursday.

"A large amount of money is estimated to be lying as unclaimed amounts with PPF (Public Provident Fund), post office, saving schemes etc. These are mostly out of investments belonging to the senior citizens and on their demise, remain unclaimed for want of relevant payment instructions," Jaitley said while presenting his maiden budget.

"I propose to set up a committee to examine and recommend how this amount can be used to protect and further financial interests of the senior citizens. The committee will give its report not later than December this year," he added.

Jaitley said the NDA government during its last term in office had introduced the Varishtha Pension Bima Yojana (VPBY) as a pension scheme for senior citizens under which 3.16 lakh people were being benefited.

"I propose to revive the scheme for a limited period from Aug 15, 2014 to Aug 14, 2015 for the benefit of citizens aged 60 years and above," he said.

The finance minister said he proposed the tax exemption limit for senior citizens at Rs.300,000, subject to parliament's approval.

"The government is notifying minimum pension of Rs.1,000 per month to all subscriber members of Employees Pension Scheme (EPS) and has made an initial provision of Rs.250 crore in the current financial year to meet the expenditure."

"Increase in mandatory wage ceiling of subscription to EPS from Rs.6,500 to Rs.15,000 has been made and a provision of Rs.250 crore has been provided in the current budget," Jaitley said.

Employees Provident Fund Organisation will launch the "Uniform Account Number" Service for contributing members to facilitate portability of Provident Fund accounts, he added.

Read more about: saving schemes, elderly
Story first published: Thursday, July 10, 2014, 17:24 [IST]
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