It refers to the welcome initiative of central government whereby banks including top three private sector banks – ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank and Axis Bank will now accept deposits under various small savings schemes like National Savings Certificate (NSC), Recurring Deposits and Monthly Income Scheme (MIS) till now sold mostly through post-offices. However, selected bank-branches were accepting deposits in Public Provident Fund (PPF), Kisan Vikas Patra-2014 (KVP), Sukanya Samriddhi Account, Senior Citizen Savings Scheme-2004 (SCSS).
But it is not sufficient. All saving-schemes available through post-offices should be uniformly available through all rather than selected bank-branches of all public-sector banks. Presently, there is a total lack of awareness about banks and their branches accepting such deposits. Moreover, RBI 8 per cent taxable savings-bonds, presently available through very limited and non-publicised bank-branches should also be likewise available through all branches of all public-sector banks. By doing so with adequate publicity, government and Reserve Bank of India (RBI) can save money by discontinuing sale-commission to agents on such investment-plans, like one per cent being presently given for sale of RBI 8 per cent taxable savings-bonds.
Subhash Chandra Agrawal
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)