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Employment is a time and age bound activity performed by individuals. While an individual is employed, he/she is advised to save some amount such that during the time he/she is unable to work (when one attains the age of retirement or when an individual is not physically and mentally able to wok to earn money to support oneself and his/her responsibilities), he/she would get some amount regularly to sustain a healthy living. This is the basic principle of the concept of pension. Pension is a social benefit which needs to be extended to every individual of any country in order to lead a dignified life after the retiring age.
National Pension Scheme is a Government of India approved pension scheme under the Retirement Plan extended for all Indian citizens within the age group of 18 to 60 years. This contribution based National Pension Scheme is considered to be the most economical pension scheme among all such schemes including Employees Provident Fund (EPF) scheme, and Public Provident Fund (PPF) Scheme of the government of India. The objectives of launching the National Pension Scheme include:
National Pension Scheme has been launched by the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) in the year 2004. Any individual registered under the National Pension Scheme is allotted a unique Permanent Retirement Account Number (PRAN). This individual needs to make a minimum yearly contribution of INR 6000 either contributed as a one time payment or in various installments of not less than INR 500 spread across the year.
The National Pension Scheme is further categorized under the following two heads:
Even a Non Resident Indian can open an account under the National Pension Scheme in order to avail the benefits of such scheme. The eligibility criteria for Non Resident Indians who wish to open an account under the National Pension Scheme include:
Non Resident Indians can easily invest in National Pension Scheme. Each individual investor in the National Pension Scheme is given a unique 12 digit Permanent Retirement Account Number (PRAN). The contributions towards a National Pension Scheme Account operated by a Non Resident Indian (NRI) needs to come either from an NRE (Non Resident Rupee) or an NRO (Non Resident Ordinary Rupee) account. The minimum contribution when an NRI opens a National Pension Scheme Account is INR 500. The NRI further needs to invest a minimum of INR 6000 in a year either as a one time payment or in installments of not less than INR 500.
National Pension Scheme Accounts can be operated from any location within India. The NRI’s do have the option of holding either of the following two types of National Pension Scheme Account:
The contributions made by the NRI’s in the National Pension Scheme are invested in a highly diversified portfolio which includes asset classes such as corporate bonds, government securities and equities. The NRI investor is further given the option to specify the ratio of funds which would be allocated to different options of investments. Depending on the risk appetite of the investors, the scheme can facilitate the investment of almost 85 percent of the invested amounts in equity. The two investment options given to the NRI’s include:
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