Atal Pension Yojana named after our ex Prime Minster it is targeted at the unorganized sector to bring those employed in the rural sector under the ambit of Pension Schemes. It was originally mentioned in the 2015 budget speech by the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in February 2015. It was formally launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 9 May in Kolkata. As of May 2015, only 11% of India’s population has any kind of pension scheme, this scheme aims to increase the number.
Under the Atal Pension Yojana, the subscribers would receive the fixed pension of Rs. 1000 per month, Rs. 2000 per month, Rs. 3000 per month, Rs. 4000 per month, Rs. 5000 per month, at the age of 60 years, depending on their contributions, which itself would vary on the age of joining the Atal Pension Yojana. The minimum age of joining APY is 18 years and maximum age is 40 years. Therefore, the minimum period of contribution by the subscriber under Atal Pension Yojana would be 20 years or more. The benefit of fixed pension would be guaranteed by the Government. The Central Government would also co-contribute 50% of the subscriber’s contribution or Rs. 1000 per annum, whichever is lower, to each eligible subscriber account, for a period of 5 years, i.e., from 2015-16 to 2019-20, who join the NPS before 31st December 2015 and who are not income tax payers. All bank account holders under the eligible category may join Atal Pension Yojana with the auto-debit facility to accounts, leading to a reduction in contribution collection charges.
The government would provide (i) fixed pension guarantee for the subscribers; (ii) would co-contribute 50% of the subscriber contribution or Rs. 1000 per annum, whichever is lower, to eligible subscribers; and (iii) would also reimburse the promotional and development activities including the incentive to the contribution collection agencies to encourage people to join the APY. All Points of Presence (Service Providers) and Aggregators under Swavalamban Scheme would enroll subscribers through the architecture of National Pension System.
This scheme will be linked to the bank accounts opened under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana scheme and the contributions will be deducted automatically. Most of these accounts had zero balance initially. The government aims to reduce the number of such zero balance accounts by using this and related schemes. The premium of Atal Pension Yojana can be paid through three options, which are, monthly, quarterly and Half Yearly.
The form for Atal Pension Yojana can be downloaded using the mentioned link http://pmjandhanyojana.co.in/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/Atal-Pension-Yojana-English-Application-form.pdf
Download the form and fill it properly without mistakes otherwise, they would have to be rectified later. Nominee details are very important in this scheme. Spouse is considered to be the default nominee so make sure you put somebody else as nomine other than your spouse.
Some facts about Atal Pension Yojana
- One is required to have safe bank account to be eligible for the Yojana
- Swavalamban Yojana will automatically switch into Atal Pension Yojana
- Aadhaar is a must while applying for the scheme.
- You can opt out of the plan after registering only once.
- The pension that you will get after completion of a term would be taxable.
As all the previous Yojana introduced by our Prime Minister, Atal Pension Yojana also has an early bird incentive. If one has enrolled before 31st March 2016 then he/she will get a government contribution. The government will contribute the maximum of Rs 1000 per year for the first 5 years. The yearly contribution should be more than Rs 2000 to get this amount. However, the subscribers who are income tax payer, state or government employee or are working in a private company and have EPF account or EPS account then they will not get government contribution.
The policy under the scheme claims that if the pension account holder dies then the contributions will be given to the family or the nominee of the account. The premiums to the pension account would be paid through the bank account or would be auto-debited from the bank account.
The government will extend the benefit of the APY via Post Offices all over the country so as to bring more people under its ambit. The implementation of the scheme through post offices is expected to be more helpful for the people in rural areas.
In March 2016, the government amended the scheme’s provisions to give the subscriber’s spouse an option to continue contributing to the account for the balance period of the premature death of the subscriber.