It is a common misconception that one needs to open a savings account with their desired bank when they wish to start a PPF (Public Provident Fund) account. However, that is not the case. It can be opened at a bank or Post Office, without having the need to open a savings account.
PPF remains an attractive investment instrument for Indians as the principal and interest earned on this scheme remains tax free (under section 80C of the Income Tax Act). Additionally, it comes with sovereign guarantee that makes its an ideal alternative to the debt allocation in your investment portfolio.
- It can be opened only by a resident Indian individual older than 18 years and by individuals on behalf of minor children.
- An NRI cannot open a PPF account.
- Only one PPF account can be maintained by an individual, except an account that is opened on behalf of a minor.
- A PPF account for a minor can be opened either by the mother or father of the child but not both on behalf of the same minor.
- A grandparent cannot open an account for the minor unless both the parents are deceased, in which case, the grandparent can act as his/her guardian.
How to open a PPF account at SBI without a savings account?
Walk into the nearest SBI (State Bank of India) branch, where you can fill and submit Form A and a nomination form to open a PPF account.
You will also have to submit a passport size photo, a copy of your PAN card, a government issued ID proof and an address proof (passport, rental agreement, bank statement or electricity/water bill)
If you do not hold a PAN, you can submit form 60-61.
You will also have to make a minimum deposit of Rs 100 at the time of opening the PPF account.
You also need to declare on the application form that you do not hold another PPF account. Make sure you do not have another PPF under your name at any other branch, bank or post office. If you do inadvertently open another, the second account will be treated as invalid.
What are the cons of not having a savings account with the bank?
When you have a savings account with SBI as well, you can link it to the PPF account. This not only allows you to open a PPF account online, you will also be able to make transfers towards the scheme and check your PPF account balance through the netbanking facility
You will also have the option to give standing instructions to make periodic credits (of a fixed amount) to the PPF account from the savings account balance. Further, at the time of maturity, your savings bank account linked to the PPF account will get credited automatically.
You can also choose ECS services with a savings account at a different bank to give standing instructions to make periodic credits to the PPF account that you hold with SBI.
If you do not wish to take the above route, you will have to personally visit the SBI branch with cash or cheque to make the PPF account deposits.