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Budget 2023: Women and Senior Citizens Become a Priority The Union Budget 2023-24 takes into account the need to empower women and senior citizens

By Paromita Gupta

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On Wednesday, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Union Budget for the year before the Parliament. It was the final budget before the 2024 elections and had everyone on their toes. One can call this budget a holistic one, as it touched upon and made announcements regarding several industries and aspects.

She further emphasized that the budget's priorities lay with the Inclusive Development, Reaching the Last Mile, Infrastructure and Investment, Unleashing the Potential, Green Growth, Youth Power, and Financial Sector.

While information pertaining to the accounts of our government and country are integral, the core reason why any citizen follows a budget is to simply learn one thing: how will it affect their daily lives? This time, the budget made major announcements pertaining to women and senior citizens of the country.

As a path towards the Amrit Kaal, Sitharaman introduced a one-time small saving scheme for the benefit of women. The Mahila Samman Savings Certificate will offer deposit facilities up to INR 2 lakhs at a fixed interest rate of 7.50 per cent for a lock-in period of two years. The scheme will be applicable only if the account holding will be in a girl or a woman's name. MSSC, currently, will be made available only up to 2025.

"This will offer deposit facility upto 2 lakh in the name of women or girls for a tenor of 2 years at fixed interest rate of 7.5 per cent with partial withdrawal option," stated the FM during the budget presentation.

"It is heartening to see that Union Budget 2023 is gender intentional and looking at promoting small savings by women. Women are committed and primary savers in most households; making these savings on her name via a simple, no-fuss product like Mahila Samman Savings Certificate will protect her income and empower her financial decisions. When women save, the beneficiaries are not only her, but her family, the community, and the larger economy – because women typically save towards long-term development and critical well-being goals such as the health, nutrition, and education of family members," shared Pallavi Tewari Madhok, Head Advisory Services India, Women's World Banking on the initiative.

Additionally, in order to empower the senior population of the country, the maximum deposit limit of Senior Citizen Savings Scheme is increased to INR 30 lakh from INR 15 lakh. Meanwhile, the maximum limit under the Monthly Income Account Scheme will be raised to INR 9 lakh from INR 4.5 lakh in case of a single account holder and from INR 9 lakh to INR 15 lakh in case of joint accounts. The interest under SCSS will continue at 7.4 per cent per annum.

"The senior citizen saving scheme maximum limit increased to 30 lakhs from the earlier 15 lakhs The monthly income scheme maximum limit increased to 9 lakhs from the earlier 4.5 lakhs. It is definitely a boost for senior citizen as help to earn more interest on their deposits," noted Neha Nagar, Founder of TaxationHelp and a Finfluencer on the amendment.

The announcements were made under the Priority 7 "Financial Sector", with the FM adding "Our reforms in the financial sector and innovative use of technology have led to financial inclusion at scale, better and faster service delivery, ease of access to credit and participation in financial markets. This Budget proposes to further these measures."

Paromita Gupta

Entrepreneur Staff

Features Writer with Entrepreneur India

Covering news and trends in AI and Metaverse segments. An avid book reader running her personal blog on the side. You may reach me at paromita@entrepreneurindia.com. 
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