NPS - National Pension Scheme

The National Pension Scheme, offered by the Government of India, is a good investment option for retired personnel who are looking to invest their money safely and get assured and attractive returns. It is open to anyone from 18 to 60 years of age.

About National Pension Scheme (NPS)

Introduced by the Central Government, the National Pension System (NPS) came into effect for all government employees from 1 January 2004 (excluding armed forces). However, from 1 May 2009, the scheme has been open for all Indian citizens. The regulating body for NPS is the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA). The administration, customer service, and records of all members of NPS are maintained by the Central Recordkeeping Agency (CRA). Contribution towards NPS can be made by the subscriber throughout his/her working life, and a certain percentage of the corpus can be withdrawn as a lump sum and the remaining can be used to buy annuity. Any Indian citizen between the ages of 18 years and 65 years can open an NPS account. 

Some of the main objectives for introducing the NPS are: 

  • Providing income for old people. 
  • Providing good returns for the long-term. 
  • Increasing security for old people.

Unique Permanent Retirement Account Numbers (PRAN) are allocated to each subscriber under the NPS Scheme at the time of their joining. Subscribers are also allocated two accounts, which they can access at any time.


On 1 May 2009, the government of India launched the voluntary National Pension System (NPS) for its citizens. NPS is managed by the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) (nodal authority). The owner of all the assets under NPS is the National Pension System Trust (NPST) which was established by the PFRDA.


The PFRDA appointed National Securities Depository Limited as the Central Record-keeping Agency (CRA) for NPS. CRA is responsible for administration, customer services, and record keeping for all NPS subscribers. The CRA will issue the Permanent Retirement Account Number (PRAN) to the subscribers under NPS.

  • NPS POP Service Providers

The Department of Posts was designated as one of the points of presence (POPs) by the PFRDA. The former provides services to the NPS subscribers via POP service providers (POP-SPs). Head Post Offices across the country are POP-SPs. The services offered by the Department of Posts include opening NPS accounts, managing contributions to the accounts, and taking care of the claim and exit withdrawal requests.

Types of NPS Accounts

NPS subscribers are issued with a Permanent Retirement Account Number (PRAN), which remains unchanged throughout the length of the scheme. NPS accounts are structured as Tier 1 NPS and Tier 2 based on the withdrawal norms.

  • NPS- Tier 1 Account

This type of account is a pension account and is mandatory. It is a non-withdrawal retirement savings account. It is the basic NPS account which does not allow premature withdrawals unless the member has completed 15 term years. These withdrawals are repayable advances and are allowed only in case of an emergency. However, Tier 1 account holders are eligible for partial withdrawals on of 25 years. Tier 1 accounts of government employees are subjected to investments in government and corporate bonds, while that of other citizens are invested in fixed deposits and liquid funds as well.

  • NPS- Tier 2 Account

This types of account is a savings account and is optional. Subscribers can withdraw savings from this account at any time. There are no tax benefits available on this account. Funds can be transferred to the Tier I account from Tier II account. No additional yearly account maintenance charges will be levied. No minimum balance required. Flexible withdrawal facility available. NRIs cannot open Tier II accounts. Once the Tier I account is closed, the Tier II account will also be closed.Tier 2 NPS accounts were launched by the government in the year 2009 and it offers greater flexibility than Tier 1 accounts. Here the account holders can withdraw their amount without any withdrawal charges or penalty. Tier 2 offers the investor an option to invest either in government bonds, fixed income instruments, or equity funds. It also allows transfer of money to Tier 1 accounts. Unlike Tier 1 accounts, NPS Tier 2 accounts does not have locking periods and are not exempted from tax under section 80 C of Income Tax Act.

  • Swavalamban Yojna Account

Swavalamban Yojna was a financial inclusion scheme for the economically backward sections of the society. It was applicable to all employees in the unorganized sector of employment. For Swavalamban accounts, government made contributions of Rs.1000 for the first four years after enrollment. Swavalamban Yojna is replaced by Atal Pension Yojna.

How does NPS Work?

  • After enrolment, a PRAN will be allotted to the NPS subscriber. After the generation of PRAN, an SMS and email alerts will be sent by the NSDL-CRA to the registered mobile number and email ID of the subscriber, respectively.
  • To create the retirement corpus, the subscriber has to make regular contributions to the NPS account till retirement.
  • The subscriber will receive the corpus after exiting from the scheme or retirement. A portion of the corpus has to be invested in an annuity in order to receive a monthly pension during the retirement years upon exiting the scheme.

Different Sectors of NPS

  • Government sectorp - The central government of India introduced the NPS on 1 January 2004 to all the employees of central autonomous bodies (CAB) except for the armed forces. Various state governments and state autonomous bodies (SAB) also adopted NPS. SAB and CAB employees contribute to the NPS from their monthly salary along with a matching contribution from the employers.
  • Private sector - NPS Corporate Sector Model and All Citizens of India sector model come under the private sector. The former is designed for organisations and their employees while the latter is for any individual not covered by any of the above-mentioned sectors.

New Pension Scheme VS National Pension Scheme

The main features differentiating the two schemes are:

Features National Pension Scheme New Pension Scheme
Contribution by employees An individual has to contribute 10% of the total of his Special Pay, Basic Pay and all other allowances that combine to make up his Provident Fund. New Pension Scheme, all of the those are included along with Dearness Allowance
Contribution by the bank The bank’s contribution will match the contribution of the employee, under the national pension scheme a separate account was created to collect the funds. The new pension scheme, the combination of the contributions of both parties will be kept in one account.
Employee’s Additional Contribution Contributions made under the National pension scheme could be stopped by employees by providing a notification one month in advance. The new pension scheme allows for withdrawals as well as contributions at any given time.
Management of Funds Managed by a P.F trust PFRDA appoints six fund managers to manage the subscriber’s investments.
Scope of Regulation No such body exists at the nationwide level. The authorised regulatory body for the New Pension Scheme is the PFRDA.
Levy of Charges No extra charges or fees were levied on subscribers. Some fixed as well as variable charges may be levied under the New Pension Scheme.

Features of NPS

The salient features of the National Pension Scheme are:

  • The NPS is eligible for all Indian citizens between the ages of 18 to 65. And Subscribers are required to make a minimum contribution of Rs. 500 at the time of opening the account.
  • The National Pension Scheme offers transparency to the subscriber and is a low cost investment option. Subscribers have the advantage of choosing their own pension fund schemes where they will be aware of how the investment is doing on a routine basis.
  • The account matures when the subscriber reaches retirement.
  • 60% of the corpus can with withdrawn on maturity and the remaining 40% is used to purchase annuities.
  • Contributions made to the NPS are eligible for tax deductions under section 80C of the Income Tax Act.
  • The NPS application process is extremely simple since the subscriber only has to open up an account at the respective nodal office and acquire a PRAN
  • Since employees are allocated unique PRANs, they will be identified by the same PRAN all over the country, regardless of which part of India they are in.
  • Subscribers can access details pertaining to the NPS online
  • The NPS offers its subscribers a wide range of options to choose from, which include Pension Fund Managers, Funds to allocate their money to and Customer services providers among others.
  • The NPS also give subscribers the flexibility to switch between fund managers and investment options
  • Should the subscriber choose, he or she can change the contribution amount as well as the contribution frequency at will
  • The NPS is a low cost investment option with extremely low fund management charges

Benefits Offered by NPS

The National Pension Scheme offers subscribers a number of benefits. These are as follows:

  • The pension account under NPS can be opened at a low cost.
  • It offers tax benefits of up to Rs.1.5 lakh as per the Income Tax Act, 1961.
  • It is easily portable.
  • The investments are expertly managed by experienced pension fund managers (PFMs).
  • NPS is regulated by the PFRDA which was set up via a parliamentary act.
  • The NPS is open to every Indian citizen and is entire voluntary
  • The subscriber has the freedom to decide how much they are willing to contribute
  • The application process is extremely convenient and easy
  • It offers subscribers versatility by allowing them to choose where to invest their money in as well as who should manage their investments
  • The subscriber can access his NPS account from anywhere in India at any time
  • Since the PFRDA controls the NPS, there is strict adherence to standards. Evaluation of the performances of fund managers also take place on a routine basis.

Eligibility Criteria for NPS

Any citizen of India between the ages of 18 and 60 years are eligible to open a NPS account. Both Resident Indians (RIs) and Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) are eligible for NPS. Hindu Undivided Families (HUFs), Overseas Citizens of India (OCI), and Person of Indian Origin (PIO) are not eligible to open a NPS account. The NPS is open to all Indian citizens, regardless of whether they are residents or NRI’s. In order to subscribe to NPS, the following criteria must be met:

  • The subscriber is required to be at least 18 years of age and not more than 60 years of age at the time of submitting his or her application to the POP
  • The applicant must be of sound mind
  • The applicant must be a first-time subscriber to the NPS
  • The applicant must adhere to the KYC rules set by the Pension Fund Regulatory Development Authority (PFRDA)

The following individuals are not eligible to avail of the NPS

  • Individuals who are not of sound mind
  • Individuals who already hold accounts with NPS previously
  • An undischarged insolvent

Fall in Returns will not Affect NPS Investors 

National Pension System (NPS) subscribers have been worried due to bleak returns in the past year from equity funds. Many investors have been showing interest in competing products such as Public Provident Fund (PPF) and Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) which provide high rate of interests of 8% and 8.55%, respectively.  

However, the poor performance of NPS is mainly due to the large-cap bias that is present in the stock market. Most NPS managers invest in stocks that are outside of Nifty, if there is a large-cap bias they tend to perform badly. Since NPS is market-linked, their returns will be volatile, therefore, experts have advised not to compare NPS with EPF and PPF. Treating NPS like a systematic investment plan (SIP) is vital, as it will help in improving long-term performance.  

Opening NPS Account at POP-SP

  • The first step is to get a Permanent Retirement Account Number. Submit a duly-filled and signed PRAN application form with identity and address proofs. The form has to be submitted with signature, photograph, and scheme preference details.
  • The form can be submitted to the nearest POP-SP. The PRAN card will be dispatched to the applicant's address by the CRA.
  • The status of the PRAN applications can be tracked through the receipt number. The number has to be entered in the CRA-NSDL website (
  • A minimum contribution of Rs.500 has to be made at the time of registration. The contribution can be made by submitting a duly-filled NPS Contribution Instruction Slip (NCIS), containing details about the payment towards the PRAN account.

Opening NPS Account through eNPS

  • PRAN registration can be done using either Aadhaar or PAN on the NPS website.
  • The mandatory details can be filled online and the applicant's scanned signature and photograph have to be uploaded to the website.
  • For registration using Aadhaar, the KYC verification process will be authenticated using the One-Time Password (OTP) that will be sent to the mobile number registered with Aadhaar.
  • The NPS website will route the applicant to a payment gateway for making a contribution to the NPS account using a debit card, credit card, or netbanking.
  • In the case of registration using PAN, the KYC verification will be done by the bank that the applicant selects for the registration process. He or she must have a savings account with the bank. The KYC details provided for registration should match the details in the bank records.

Opening NPS Account - for NRIs

  • Contributions to NPS made by NRIs are regulated as per the requirements under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) and Reserve Bank of India (RBI). Pension and annuity will be paid in Indian currency.
  • Select the Repatriable or Non-Repatriable status of the bank account.
  • Fill in the NRO/NRE bank account details and upload a scanned copy of the passport.
  • Enter the permanent address in India or the overseas address for communication.
  • Once the PRAN has been allotted, the subscriber can choose the eSign or print and courier option to open a Tier I account.
  • In the case of eSign option, after the authentication of a subscriber's Aadhaar, the registration form has to be eSigned for a fee of Rs.5 plus Service Tax.
  • In the case of print and courier option, take a printout of the registration form, paste a recent photograph and affix a signature. The form should be dispatched within 90 days to the CRA from the PRAN allotment date.
  • The form has to be mailed to the below address:

Central Recordkeeping Agency (eNPS)

NSDL e-Governance Infrastructure Limited,

1st Floor, Times Tower, Kamala Mills Compound, Senapati Bapat Marg,

Lower Parel, Mumbai - 400 013

Phone number: 022 - 4090 4242


NPS Subscriber's Contribution

The National Pension System (NPS) is a long-term retirement savings scheme. An NPS subscriber, upon reaching the retirement age can withdraw 60% of the retirement corpus in a lump sum and the remaining is converted into pension. The retirement age is 60 years while the NPS entry age has been extended up to 65 years. If a subscriber wants to exit before the age of 60, then only 20% of the accumulated amount can be withdrawn while the remaining will be used to purchase an annuity product that offers regular income. NPS partial withdrawals are allowed only after 3 years of continued contribution. Only 25% of the corpus can be partially withdrawn and that too under certain conditions like the treatment of a life-threatening disease or higher education. Also, only 3 partial withdrawals are allowed for the entire NPS tenure. In the case of the demise of a subscriber, his or her nominee can withdraw 100% of the fund.

Most NPS subscribers look forward to withdrawing their retirement corpus after reaching 60 years of age but there are those who may want to bypass the annuity phase and resume investing in the scheme. Here are a few points that will help those who want to do the latter:

  • Individuals aged 18 years can invest in the National Pension System until they reach the age of 60. However, if he or she chooses to contribute to the corpus even after retirement, it can be done till the age of 70 or superannuation.
  • In order to resume contribution even after 60 years of age, he or she will have to submit a written request.
  • The request has to be submitted at least 15 days before the individual reaches 60 years of age or superannuation.
  • If an individual has missed the 15-day window, then a written request can be submitted to the National Pension System Trust, explaining the reason for delay in exercising the option. This has to be done within 185 days of the individual reaching 60 years of age or the age of superannuation.
  • The Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) increased the entry age for NPS up to 65 years in 2017. Individuals above 60 years but within 65 years can invest for a minimum of 3 years but no more than 70 years of age. In such a case, an early exit is considered only after minimum 3 years of continued contribution.

Thus, at the time of exit, an NPS subscriber aged 60 years can choose any of the following 4 options:

  1. Annuitise minimum 40% of the corpus and withdraw the rest in lump sum.
  2. Annuitise the entire corpus instead of just the mandatory 40%.
  3. Annuitise minimum 40% of the corpus, invest the remaining amount as a continued contribution to the NPS, and withdraw it at the age of 70.
  4. Defer annuity payment for 3 years from the exit age but no more than 70 years of age.

With the above-mentioned investment options, one is offered sufficient flexibility to make the most of the NPS corpus.

Age Limit of NPS

The PFRDA (Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority) recently increased the upper age limit for joining NPS (National Pension Scheme) to 65 from 60 years.

The pension regulatory board has approved the change and would shortly make the official announcement. NPS is currently available to people between 18 years and 60 years of age only. The scheme, however, allows contributions to the pension fund until the age of 70 years. The reason behind this government reform in NPS is to allow for easy portability of retirement funds and make NPS more desirable for customers. Government aims to open up NPS to sectors that don’t have employer pensions. Only around 15% to 16% employees in the country come under a pension scheme. This is because most of the workforce (85%) works in the informal/unorganized sector.

Even a 1% difference in scheme cost over 25 years to 30 years can make a difference of 15% to 16% by the end of the scheme because of compounding. Management charges for NPS fund is also the lowest (0.01%), when compared to other funds which charge 0.4% or 0.5%. Moreover, NPS provides the best returns in the industry.

Applying to NPS

  • The first step involves filing an application to obtain a Permanent Retirement Account Number (PRAN). This can be done by picking up an application form from any Point of Presence–Service Providers (POP-SP). A POP-SP is any financial institution that is authorized as a collection point for NPS subscribers. A PRAN can also be obtained by visiting the NSDL website.
  • Once the form has been filled, it has to be submitted to the POP-SP along with KYC verification documents such as the Aadhaar and PAN.
  • Following the KYC verification, the subscriber should make a minimum contribution of Rs.500.
  • When the application is being processed, the applicant receives a receipt number to help track the status of their PRAN card.
  • Once the application is reviewed and the KYC verification is complete, the PRAN Card is sent to the Central Recordkeeping Agency (CRA) that corresponds to the applicant’s registered address.

Subscribers can begin their contribution once they receive their PRAN card.

NPS Investment Choices

Subscribers can select a pension fund manager and an investment choice for their NPS account.

  • Active choice- Subscribers can select the allocation percentage in asset classes under the active choice depending on their risk appetites.
  • Auto choice - Funds are by default allocated among the asset classes in a pre-defined combination based on the age of the subscriber.

NPS subscribers can change the investment choice free of charge once a year. Different investment choices can be chosen for Tier I and Tier II accounts.

NPS Nomination

Subscribers have to appoint nominees at the time of opening a NPS account by mentioning the details in the registration form. 3 nominees can be appointed in Tier I and Tier II accounts. If the nomination has not been made at the time of opening the account, then it can be done after the allotment of PRAN. Visit a POP-SP and request to update nomination details for a fee of Rs.20 plus Service Tax for each request. Nominees can be changed any number of times before exiting the scheme.

Pension Fund Managers of NPS

The 8 pension fund managers of NPS are:

  • Pension fund to be incorporated by Birla Sun Life Insurance company limited
  • HDFC Pension Management Company
  • UTI Retirement Solutions Ltd
  • SBI Pension Fund Pvt Ltd
  • Reliance Capital Pension Fund Ltd
  • Kotak Mahindra Pension Fund Ltd
  • LIC Pension Fund Ltd
  • ICICI Prudential Pension Funds Management Company Limited

The subscriber’s contributions or investments in NPS are managed by registered pension fund managers who invest in instruments like equities, corporate bonds, and government securities for favourable returns. NPS subscribers can change the pension fund managers free of charge once a year. Different pension fund managers can be chosen for Tier I and Tier II accounts.

NPS Portability

The account can be managed from anywhere in the country. Contributions can be made at any POP across the country. NPS subscribers can shift from private sector to government sector and vice versa.

NPS Contribution

  • The minimum initial contribution to a NPS account is Rs.500 for Tier I account ands Rs.250 for Tier II account, excluding taxes.
  • The minimum subsequent contribution is Rs.500 excluding taxes.
  • There is no maximum contribution limit.
  • The minimum contribution limit in a financial year is Rs.1,000 in Tier I account.
  • The minimum number of transactions in a financial year is one.

NPS Transaction Charges

  • The registration charge excluding taxes is Rs.200.
  • The transaction charge is 0.25% of the contribution amount subject to minimum Rs.20 and maximum Rs.25,000, excluding taxes.
  • All service charges is Rs.20 excluding taxes.

Cheque, cash, and demand draft (DD) are some of the available payment modes.

NPS Withdrawal Rules

  • Subscribers can exit from NPS upon reaching the age of 60 years or upon death. A subscriber has to use 40% of the corpus to purchase an annuity and the remaining can be withdrawn in a lump sum upon exit at retirement. The monthly annuity or pension is paid via direct bank transfer to the subscribers through Annuity Service Providers. In case the total retirement corpus is less than or equal to Rs.2 lakh, then subscribers can withdraw the whole sum without having to purchase an annuity.
  • Premature exit from NPS before retirement age is allowed if the subscriber has been with NPS for minimum 10 years. In the case of premature exit, 80% of the corpus has to be used to purchase annuity and the remaining 20% is paid in a lump sum. In the unfortunate event of the death of the subscriber, the retirement corpus will be paid to the nominee or legal heir of the subscriber.
  • Subscribers can choose to defer the lump-sum withdrawable amount of up to 60% till the age of 70 years. Subscribers can also choose to contribute beyond the age of 60 years but not above 70 years.
  • Subscribers can also use more than 40% of the corpus to purchase an annuity at the age of 60 years.
  • NPS allows partial withdrawals up to 25% of the corpus for certain purposes such as higher education, wedding, house construction, and treatment of specified illnesses.
  • Only 3 partial withdrawals are allowed during the whole tenure.

NPS Withdrawal Process

Subscribers have to submit a withdrawal application form at a POP-SP with the necessary documents and the POP will authenticate the documents like PRAN card, identity proof, address proof, cancelled cheque, etc. It will be then forwarded to the NSDL-CRA. The CRA will register, process, and settle the claim in consultation with the NPS Trust. The forms for withdrawal request can be downloaded from

NPS Grievance Redressal Management System

  • Subscribers can register their grievances on using the I-PIN allotted to them at the time of opening a Permanent Retirement Account.
  • They can also mail forms to the CRA directly or submit their grievance at a POP-SP which in turn will forward it to the Central Grievance Management System (CGMS).
  • Subscribers can contact the CRA call centre on the toll-free number 1-800-222080 to register their grievances using T-PIN.

NPS Tax Benefits

  • Tax benefits for individuals include 10% of gross income under Section 80CCD (1) subject to a maximum of Rs.1.5 lakh under Section 80CCE. An additional tax deduction on investment up to Rs.50,000 in Tier I account is available under subsection 80CCD (1B).
  • Tax benefits for employers include up to 10% of the employee's salary (Basic + DA) which is deductible from taxable income as 'Business Expense' from the Profit and Loss Account.
  • Partial withdrawal amount of up to 25% before 60 years of age is exempt from tax. After 60 years of age, up to 40% withdrawal in a lump sum is exempt from tax.

Availing an extra Rs.50,000 Tax Deduction through NPS 

Under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961, an individual can avail up to Rs.1.5 lakh of income tax benefits. However, by investing in the National Pension System (NPS), an individual can avail additional tax benefits. 

In addition to the Rs.1.5 lakh tax deduction that is allowed under Section 80C, if a salaried or self-employed individual invests Rs.50.000 towards NPS, he/she will be eligible for additional tax deductions under Section 80CCD(1B). However, under Section 80CCD(1B), only Tier-I NPS accounts are eligible for an extra tax deduction of Rs.50,000. Tier-II accounts are not eligible for tax benefits. Also, under Section 80CCC, 80C, and 80CCD(1), the total amount of tax deduction should not be more than Rs.1.5 lakh.  

Both salaried and non-salaried individuals are eligible to receive tax deductions of Rs.50,000 by investing in NPS. Non-salaried individuals can claim a maximum tax deduction of 20% of their yearly income, whereas, salaried individuals can claim up to 10%. 

NPS is a voluntary contribution that helps in saving money for retirement. Tier-I and Tier-II are the two types of accounts available under NPS. Till the subscriber reaches the age of 60, he/she will not be able to withdraw money from a Tier-I account. However, under certain circumstances, partial withdrawal is allowed. In case of a Tier-II account, the subscriber can withdraw his/her money at any time. However, a Tier-II account cannot be opened as a stand-alone account. The subscriber must have a Tier-I account in order to open a Tier-II account.  

NPS Asset Classes

The investment in the NPS depends on the investment portfolio of the subscriber. The investment in the scheme is split up into asset classes. They are:

  • Class A: Class A investments are those that are made in alternative resources such as real estate and infrastructure.
  • Class E: Class E investments refer to investments made in equity market instruments.
  • Class C: Class C investments are those that are made in fixed income investment instruments. These investments do not include government securities.
  • Class G: Class G investments are those that are made in government securities.

The allocation of these assets can be customized to suit the preference of the subscriber. The proportion of investment in these assets varies based on the type of investment portfolio the subscriber chooses. These accounts are the Active Choice and Auto Choice and they differ based on the amount of equity exposure the subscriber wants.

Auto Choice for NPS Subscribers

Auto Choice subscribers are those who require guidance on where they should allocate their assets. All subscribers to the NPS are allotted this type of account unless they specifically choose the Active Choice option. The exposure to equity and allocation of assets is largely dependent on the age of the subscriber. A subscriber between the ages of 18 to 35 years has 50% of his or her contribution invested in Class E, 30% in Class C, and 20% in Class G. This proportion of investment changes when the subscriber crosses age 35. Class E investments begin to decrease gradually as the subscriber ages and investment is Class E and Class G increase every year until the subscriber is 55 years old.

The Auto Choice option functions on the basis of a life cycle approach. The cap on equity exposure for a subscriber who chooses the auto choice option is 50%. A recent notification from the PFRDA announced the decision to increase equity exposure for Auto Life subscribers to 75%. Subscribers can either choose to be more aggressive with their equity investments or more conservative, with equity investments as low as 25%. The exposure to equity decreases by 15% when the subscriber turns 55 years old and continues to decrease by 15% as time passes.

Active Choice

Subscribers who select the Active Choice option do not require guidance on how their assets should be allocated. Subscribers can choose their fund manager and then decide on the proportion of their contribution to be invested in Class E, C, and G. At present, the cap on equity exposure for Active Choice subscribers is 50%, but the PFRDA proposed to increase the limit to 75% for subscribers under the age of 35.

Subscribers can shift from Active Choice to Auto Choice and vice versa. However, they can make only one shift every financial year.

Central Recordkeeping Agency (CRA)

The CRA or Central Recordkeeping Agency was set up for the NPS after the PFRDA and NSDL e-Governance Infrastructure Limited came to an agreement. The CRA is a key component of the National Pension System and is vital to its working. As per the guidelines of the NPS, every employee who has commenced working for the government is required to open up an account with the CRA. This account in turn will be assigned a unique PRAN for identification.

The most important duties and roles of the CRA are as follows:

  • Providing services to all NPS subscribers with regards to administration and Recordkeeping
  • Ensuring that each individual subscriber is issued with a unique PRAN
  • Overseeing the issuance of PRANs to subscribers through a database
  • Recording any transactions that take place in relation to each individual PRAN
  • Providing an interface between NPS intermediaries and the PFRDA
  • Keeping a check on contributions by subscribers as well as relaying any relevant instructions and information to the corresponding pension funds on a day to day basis.
  • Providing subscribers with statements relating to their PRANs
  • Allocating other functions as per PFRDA rules and regulations

The CRA is also in charge of providing connectivity to the PFRDA and other intermediaries such as the Trustee Banks via electronic means.

Applicants belonging to Swavalamban Yojana

Any Indian citizen aged between 18 years and 60 years at the time of submitting their application, who is a part of the unorganized sector or is not a regular employee of the State or Central government or any of their undertakings, is eligible to open an NPS - Swavalamban account. However, the applicant must not already be covered under the following social security schemes:

  • The Jammu and Kashmir Employees' Provident Fund Act, 1961
  • The Assam Tea Plantations Provident Fund and Pension Fund Scheme Act, 1955
  • The Coal Mines Provident Fund and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1948
  • The Seamen's Provident Fund Act, 1966
  • Employees' Provident Fund and miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952

How to Calculate Pension for NPS Scheme?

Whenever calculating the amount of pension an individual will receive from the NPS, it is important to note that the money that the subscriber has invested will not grow at a predetermined rate and that the NPS will not pay the pension amount to the subscriber directly.

The individual will have to take responsibility with regards investing on a regular basis in the scheme, which in turn will invest the money on the behalf of the individual. After the individual reaches the age of 60, he or she will be required to invest the money received in order to obtain a regular income after retirement.

Calculating the amount of pension a person receives can differ from individual to individual due to many factors, such as their risk profile, their choice of fund manager, the fund manager’s performance as well as the approach to investment of the individual’s money.

Individuals can make use of NPS calculator that can be found on many websites on the internet. These calculators base pension calculations on the following parameters:

  • Contribution Amount
  • Frequency
  • Rate of Interest
  • Number of Years

Interest Rates Offered by NPS

Due to the fact that the NPS invests subscriber’s money into a broad range of investment options, the NPS does not offer any particular interest rate. In general, the NPS Interest rate is anywhere between 12% - 14% interest, which is still on the higher side when taking other investment options into consideration.

Subscribers can avail the following tax benefits under NPS

Subscribers can avail the following NPS Tax Benefits:

  • Tax deductions under Section 80CCE, which states that the total amount of deduction shall not be more than Rs 1 lakh under Section 80CCD and Section 80CCC
  • Tax deductions under Section 80CCD (2) with regards to contributions made by the Central Government.

These tax benefits can only be availed by subscribers with Tier I accounts.

Taxation & Withdrawal

In addition to helping save for retirement, the NPS also has a number of tax benefits. NPS subscribers are eligible for tax deductions up to Rs.1.5 on their contribution under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act.

On maturity, 40% of the sum withdrawn is free from taxation. The remaining 60% is taxable. However, 40% of the sum accumulated in an NPS account is used to purchase annuities. NPS subscribers can also choose to withdraw the sum in their account before maturity under specific circumstances. In cases where the subscriber is below 60 years old, the subscriber can withdraw only 20% of the amount in their account. The remaining is invested in annuities. However, a partial withdrawal is only permitted after the subscriber has completed 10 years of contribution. In cases of emergencies, subscribers who have contributed for a minimum of 3 years to the scheme can withdraw up to 25% of the corpus.

Charges Levied by POP’s & CRA

In the case of Tier I accounts, the employer is required to pay all fees and charges. However with regards to Tier II accounts, the subscriber is liable to pay for all transnational and activational charges. The following are the charges that falls under (Points of Presence )POP & CRA(Central Recordkeeping Agency )

The CRA levies the following fees and charges:

PRA account opening fees - Rs 50
PRA account maintenance charges - Rs 190 per year
Transaction fees - Rs 4 per transaction

The POP levies the following fees and charges:

Registration fees at initiation - Rs 100
0.25% of the initial amount contributed by the subscriber for contribution upload as well as any transactions pertaining to contributions uploads thereafter
If any transactions are made wherein the subscriber has not made a contribution - Rs 20

It is important to note that these fees are chargeable from the date of joining and any other charges and services taxes may be imbued in line with current tax laws.

Procedures to Check NPS Statement Online

Subscribers can check their balances in Tier I and Tier II accounts by following the steps below:

  • First open the main website of the CRA and NSDL via the following link
  • Login as a subscriber to access the balance details under NPS
  • Login by entering your user ID and password, which is the PRAN number allocated by the NSDL to each individual subscriber
  • Following the log-in procedure, head to the ‘Views’ tab shown under that particular transaction statement
  • This will provide the subscriber with details of where his money is invested as well as the fund managers appointed to manage his investments
  • The subscriber can also check the aggregate amount that has been invested by both himself as well as the government, including any returns he might have accrued
  • Tier II balance details can be accessed by heading to the ‘Account Details’ section, which is shown at the bottom

Generation of Returns through NPS

Any returns that subscribers accrue through the NPS are usually borne after the NPS invests funds in a broad range of securities such as government securities, equity and corporate debt. Due to the good performance in both debt and equity markets, fund managers have attained good returns for subscribers in recent times.

NPS Withdrawal Rules

Withdrawal from the NPS Scheme is allowed by the PFRDA only under the following conditions:

  • If a minimum of 40% of the total accumulated pension of the subscriber is used for the purchase of annuities, then the remaining accumulated balance is given to the subscriber in the form of a lump sum
  • In the event of the death of the subscriber, the total pension that the subscriber has accumulated will be paid to his or her nominee
  • If a minimum of 80% of the total accumulated pension of the subscriber is used for purchasing annuities, then the remaining balance will be given out to the subscriber in the form of a lump sum.

NPS Withdrawal Rules for both Tier I & II

The main rules with regards to withdrawals made from Tier I and Tier II accounts are:

  • Withdrawal from Tier-I accounts: Should the subscriber complete service of 15 years, then he will be eligible to make withdrawals before maturity. Should he complete service of 25 years then he can make withdrawals totaling to 50% of his contribution. These withdrawals can be made in case of serious emergency or similar situations.
  • Withdrawal from Tier-II accounts: No restrictions on withdrawals exist on Tier-II accounts. Subscribers have the freedom to make withdrawals whenever they so choose depending on their needs and requirements.

NPS Premature Withdrawal Rules for both Tier I & II

There are a number of basic and generic rules regarding premature withdrawals from NPS Scheme as far as both Tier I and Tier II accounts are concerned:

  • The subscriber is allowed to make partial withdrawals of a maximum of 25% of the contribution
  • Only three premature withdrawals are allowed per subscriber
  • In order to be eligible to make premature withdrawals, subscribers are required to have made contributions towards the NPS for at least 10 years
  • In the event of any major emergency such as a major illness, then premature withdrawals can be allowed to meet treatment expenses
  • Premature withdrawals can also be made to meet educational and marital expenses of the subscriber’s children
  • Premature withdrawals can also be made by a subscribed should he intend to buy a house for the first time

How to Exit Prematurely from NPS?

NPS which was launched in January of 2004 is a government-sponsored pension scheme. Subscribers of the scheme can contribute to their pension accounts at regular intervals throughout their working period. They can make partial withdrawals from the pension corpus in a lump sum. The remaining sum should be used to purchase an annuity that provides regular income after their retirement. The following are the 3 conditions under which a National Pension System (NPS) subscriber can exit his or her account:

  • On superannuation
  • Upon the death of the subscriber
  • Premature closure

Here are some important points to keep in mind when prematurely exiting NPS:

  • Subscribers can prematurely close their NPS accounts only after 10 years of completion (from the date of opening the account).
  • Minimum 80% of the pension amount has to be utilised for the purpose of purchasing an annuity with monthly pension payouts.
  • The remaining 20% of the pension corpus can be withdrawn all at once in a lump sum.
  • NPS subscribers can withdraw the pension corpus from their NPS account online upon receiving confirmation and approval from their Point of Presence Service Providers (POP-SPs).
  • A pension corpus of less than Rs.1 lakh can be withdrawn as a lump sum amount.
  • If the mandatory Tier I account is closed, then by default, the voluntary Tier II account will also be closed. The entire sum of money from the Tier II account can be withdrawn without any restrictions, unlike the Tier I account.
  • Subscribers have the option to defer withdrawing the lump sum amount from their pension corpus until 70 years of age.
  • If a subscriber discontinues the investment, then the NPS account will be frozen. To reactivate the account, the subscriber will have to make a minimum contribution and pay the penalty fee.

Procedures & Documentations Required for NPS Withdrawals

Any subscriber looking to stop making contributions to the NPS is required to fill up, complete and submit a withdrawal application form to his or her respective Point of Presence.

  • The subscriber is also required to submit the documents mentioned below with the withdrawal forms:
  • Original PRAN card
  • Identity Proof such as Passport, PAN Card, Driver’s License etc
  • Address Proof such as Passport, Voters ID, Aadhar Card etc
  • Bank certificates or canceled cheques that contain the name of the subscriber as well as his bank account number with IFSC code. This is required for transfer of funds either electronically or through a direct credit
  • Following authentication of all documents, the Point of Presence will then send them to the CRA and NSDL
  • The CRA will then ensure that the claim is registered and the required application forms and documents are submitted
  • Following the receipt of the documents, the CRA will ensure that the application is processed and the account is settled

Filing Withdrawal Claims

The following is the procedure for filing a withdrawal claim for an NPS account.

  • A withdrawal claim must be filed at the nodal office of the Central Recordkeeping Agency (CRA) or the National Pension Scheme Trust.
  • The amount permitted for withdrawal is restricted to 25% of the funds accumulated in the subscriber’s account, excluding the contributions made by the employer.
  • Withdrawal claims filed for constructing a home should be verified with proof that the property belongs to the subscriber or is held jointly with their spouse. Additionally, the withdrawal is only permitted of the subscriber does not own other property apart from their ancestral property.
  • When making claims for withdrawal for treatments for medical illnesses for the subscriber, the request for withdrawal can be made by the subscriber’s family member.
  • A subscriber is only permitted to make 3 withdrawals during the tenure of the NPS.

NPS Withdrawal Forms

The Indian government has separated all NPS withdrawal Forms into three different categories:

  • Employees of the Government
  • Subscribers belonging to corporates
  • Swavalamban or unorganized sector subscribers

Withdrawal Forms pertaining to Government employees

  • Form 101GS - Employees in government service can avail of this form should they choose to withdraw their accumulated pension following their retirement
  • Form 102GP - Employees in government service can avail of this form should they choose to withdraw their accumulated pension before their time of retirement
  • Form 103GD - Nominees or any legal heir of an employee with the government who is a part of the NPS, can avail of this form in order to claim the pension accumulated in the account of the subscriber.

Withdrawal Forms pertaining to Corporate Subscribers

  • Form 301 - Corporate employees as well as other individuals and citizens who opt for withdrawal of their total accumulated pension following retirement can use this form
  • Form 302 - Corporate employees as well as other individuals and citizens who opt for withdrawal of their total accumulated pension before retirement can use this form
  • Form 303 - Nominees or any legal heir of a corporate employee can avail of this form in order to claim the pension accumulated in the account of the subscriber.

Withdrawal Forms Pertaining to Swavalamban Subscribers

  • Form 501 - Any subscriber who is a part of the Swavalamban sector can use this particular form to make withdrawals of their total accumulated pension following their retirement
  • Form 502 - Any subscriber who is a part of the Swavalamban sector can use this form to make withdrawals of their total accumulated pension before their retirement
  • Form 503 - Any nominee of a person who is a part of the Swavalamban sector can make use of this form to claim the total pension amount in the account of the subscriber

Death Benefits Provided under NPS

As per the guidelines of the National Pension Scheme, the nominee of the subscriber is allowed to withdraw, as a lump sum, the total pension amount that has been accumulated in the account of the subscriber in the unfortunate event of his or her death.

In order for a nominee to have the NPS Death Benefits, he or she is required to provide the following documents:

  • The relevant and form pertaining to withdrawals should be completed and submitted depending on the subscriber’s employment status
  • The PRAN Card in original
  • A canceled cheque showing relevant details of the nominee such as his or her bank account number as well as IFSC Code
  • The subscriber’s death certificate
  • Any document or certificate that proves that the person claiming the amount is the legal nominee or heir of the subscriber
  • The nominee’s ID proof as well as Proof of Address

National Pension Scheme (NPS) is a pension plan designed and regulated by the PFRDA. Citizens (including NRIs) between the age group of 18 years to 55 years are eligible for enrollment in the NPS scheme. While NPS is compulsory for government employees, it acts purely as a voluntary contribution system for others. NPS assures a fixed income for a definite period after retirement. PFRDA has appointed 7 fund managers to handle the investment portfolios, and they are as follows:

  • HDFC Pension Management Company Limited
  • ICICI Pension Fund Management Company Limited
  • Kotak Mahindra Pension Fund Limited
  • LIC Pension Fund Limited
  • Reliance Capital Pension Fund Limited
  • SBI Pension Funds Private Limited
  • UTI Retirement Solutions Limited

How to Contribute towards NPS Scheme?

To contribute towards NPS you need to register for PRAN. PRAN or Permanent Retirement Account Number is a 12 digit unique identification number issued to subscribers of NPS. PFRDA in collaboration with NSDL has set up a Central Bookkeeping Agency that stores all member related information in its records. NSDL is the authority responsible for issue of PRAN. The below points illustrate how to apply for a Permanent Retirement Account Number.

Online Registration for NPS Scheme

  • To register for NPS online, paste the following URL in your browser
  • Select new registration and in the section below choose Individual Subscriber
  • Further under the columns listed, select your citizenship and choose from Aadhaar or PAN card to register with, and fill in the details
  • Also, select the type of NPS account that you wish to open
  • If you have selected PAN, then also select your bank where you maintain a savings or current account from the drop down menu. If your bank is not listed in the drop-down, you can apply for PRAN offline
  • Click on continue and it will navigate to the Subscriber Registration page where you will be required to fill in the following information:
  • Fill in your personal details in the first section
  • After entering the details the system will generate an acknowledgment number, which will be required for later purpose
  • In the Contact Details section provide the details as mentioned in your address proof
  • Complete the fields in the other two sections—Bank Details and Scheme & Nomination Details
  • In the section that follows, upload your photograph and scanned signature
  • After paying the required minimum amount, you will be allotted a Permanent Retirement Account Number (PRAN)

After completion of the registration process you need to take a printout of the form, fix your photo and sign it. Send this form to the below mentioned address within 90 days from the date of online registration:

Central Recordkeeping Agency (eNPS),

NSDL e-Governance Infrastructure Limited,

1st Floor, Times Tower,

Kamala Mills Compound, Senapati Bapat Marg,

Lower Parel, Mumbai – 400 013

You will receive your PRAN card as a registered post on the same address that you have provided at the time of registration.

NPS vs Atal Pension Yojna

National Pension Scheme Atal Pension Yojna
Minimum age for enrollment: 18 years Maximum age for enrollment: 60 years Minimum age for enrollment: 18 years Maximum age for enrollment: 40 years
The minimum contribution for tier1 and tier2 NPS accounts are Rs.6000 p.a and Rs.2000 p.a respectively The amount to be contributed depends purely on the individual's age at the time of opting for the plan
No limit on maximum contribution The maximum limit is determined based on individuals age
There is no limit on maximum pension amount received The maximum pension limit of Rs.5000
NPS subscribers can opt out of the scheme by withdrawing 20% of the accumulated amount as a lump sum and the remaining as a series of annual sums Cannot opt of the scheme before attaining 60 years of age
Contributions up to Rs.1,50,000 are exempted under the Income Tax Act Contributions are fully exempt under Section 80C and Section 80CCD of the Income Tax Act


National Pension Scheme Public Provident Fund
NPS offers tax benefits up to Rs.1.5 lakhs under section 80CCD (1) of the Income Tax Act and up to Rs.50,000 under section 80CCD(1B) Offers tax benefits up to Rs.1.5 lakhs under section 80C of the Income Tax Act
Employer contributions are eligible for tax benefits Not applicable to PPF funds
Allows partial withdrawals subject to stringent conditions Very few restrictions are imposed on partial withdrawals
Does not provide loan facility You can apply for loans against your accrued PPF balance
Provides you an option to invest in equities and government bonds Provides only the announced interest rates for the fiscal year
Premature closure of account is possible Cannot close the account before maturity, i.e. 15 years from the date of enrollment
NRIs can invest in NPS As per the rules, NRIs cannot enroll for PPF scheme


National Pension Scheme Employee Provident Fund
NPS is a voluntary scheme that allows one to contribute any amount above Rs.6000 a year for Tier I and Rs.2000 a year for Tier II EPF is compulsory for all employees in the organized sector with an income of above Rs.15,000 per month
You can select your fund manager from the organizations listed by PFRDA All EPF accounts are managed by the EPFO
Voluntary contributions are made by subscribers at any chosen time period 12% of the employee contribution is matched with 12% of the employer contribution
Interest rate depends purely on your choice of fund manager and asset allocation Interest rates are announced each year by the Finance Ministry in consultation with the EPF trustees

NPS vs Mutual Funds

National Pension Scheme Mutual Funds
More liquid than EPF but less when compared to mutual funds Offers high liquidity
Subscribers can choose only one fund manager out of the 8 options available no such restrictions on mutual funds
Operational costs are less Higher when compared to social security schemes
Maximum age at entry is 60 years No upper age limit

Points of Presence (PoP)

Points of Presence are banks that are appointed for opening NPS accounts by the PFRDA. The following are the charges that an individual has to incur when opening an NPS account offline:

  • Initial subscriber registration- Rs 200
  • Initial contribution upload - 0.25% of the employee’s contribution
  • Transactions following the opening of the account - 0.25% of the employee’s contribution
  • Transactions unrelated to contributions – Rs 20
  • eNPS for contributions that follow – 0.10% of the employee’s contribution
  • Persistency – Rs 50

Central Recordkeeping Agency (CRA) Charges

The CRA is responsible for keeping a record of all NPS subscribers. Additionally, it is also responsible for customer service and administrative functions. The following are the charges levied by the CRA:

  • PRA opening charges – Rs 40
  • Annual cost of PRA maintenance –Rs 40
  • Charge for each transaction – RS 3.75

In addition, the CRA also has other charges such as the Investment Management Fee, which is 0.01% of the contribution; as well as the Custodian Fee of 0.0032% and NPS Trust Fee of 0.01%.

Exiting from NPS

Subscribers can exit the NPS in the following cases: retirement, attaining the age of 60, death and premature exit. Exiting the scheme can be done by either submitting a form in person or online.

Offline Process

Government employees can submit a physical for at a Nodal Office that in turn submits the claim online. Non-Government employees can submit the form at PoP and can have an online filed by the PoP.

Online Process

Exit can be made online by logging on and registering to the CRA website. Once registered, employees can request an exit withdrawal. The form would require the employee to select the type of exit. A claim ID will have to be generated at the Nodal Office in case the exit is premature.

Some of the top performing NPS schemes are the HDFC Pension Fund, ICICI Prudential Fund, Kotak Pension Fund and the LIC Pension Fund.

NPS-Corporate Model

The National Pension System which is more commonly known as NPS, is a cost-effective retirement savings scheme that offers better growth options via long-term market-linked savings. The Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) manages the National Pension System. An NPS subscriber can contribute to the retirement savings account and so can his or her employer as a co-contribution to add to the employee's welfare. When a subscriber contributes greatly and for a long period of time, the charges deducted are lower and accumulated pension corpus is higher.

The PFRDA introduced a new model called the NPS-Corporate Model to extend the NPS retirement savings scheme to include employees of corporates, Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs), and central and state public sector enterprises. This platform gives the employers an opportunity to co-contribute to the social security benefits of their employees. Here are some of the important features and benefits of the NPS-Corporate Model:

  • Employers can introduce the NPS-Corporate Model along with the other retirement savings schemes like the Employees' Provident Fund.
  • While the employers are eligible for tax benefits on the contributions made to the employees' NPS accounts as business expenses, the employees are eligible for tax benefits on contributions made by both themselves and the employers. A maximum of 10% of the employer's contribution is eligible for tax benefits under the business expense category. Employees can claim tax deductions up to Rs.1.5 lakh as per section 80CCE of the Income Tax Act.
  • Employers don't have to waste money and time on record keeping, annuity, investment management, etc. in the case of NPS. Either the employers can select the points of presence and pension fund managers, and make investment choices for all employees on a corporate level or leave the choice to individual employees.
  • Given the frequency of employment change among the corporate employees, the portability features of the NPS is best suited to them.
  • NPS provides its subscribers an array of funds with flexible investment options like the Active and Auto choices. The employer or employee can choose any of the following pension funds - Pension fund to be incorporated by Birla Sun Life Insurance company limited, Kotak Mahindra Pension Fund Limited, HDFC Pension Fund Ltd., ICICI Prudential Pension Funds Management Company Limited, UTI Retirement Solutions Limited, LIC Pension Fund Limited, SBI Pension Funds Pvt. Limited, and Reliance Capital Pension Fund Limited.
  • Employers and employees can contribute to the Tier I account and either one of them can pay the charges. NPS subscribers can also opt for a voluntary savings feature called the Tier II account which offers flexible withdrawal and liquidity options but the tax benefits aren’t as high as the Tier I account. To activate the Tier II account, subscribers have to submit the Composite Subscriber Registration Form (CSRF). The transaction charges for Tier II accounts will have to be paid by the subscriber and not the employer. Tier II earnings can be transferred to the Tier I account but not the other way round.
  • The NPS-Corporate Model allows 3 contribution options - equal contributions by the employee and employer, unequal contributions by the employee and employer, and contributions from either the employee or the employer. The minimum contribution to the Tier I account is Rs.500 per contribution, Rs.1,000 per year, and the minimum number of contributions is one per year. The minimum contribution to Tier II accounts is Rs.250 per contribution.
  • If minimum contributions aren’t made, then the accounts will be frozen and the online features provided by the Central Record Keeping Agency (CRA) will be restricted.
  • Up to 3 nominees can be appointed for the NPS Tier I account. If a subscriber passes away, then his or her nominee will receive 100% of the NPS pension corpus in a lump sum.
  • NPS subscribers get periodic disclosure of their returns to help them better manage their funds.
  • Employees can transfer their corpus to a new employer using the same Permanent Retirement Account Number (PRAN) in the case of a job change.
  • Subscribers can register their grievance with the Centralised Grievance Management System (CGMS) via email, call centre, post or the CRA website.
  • Those subscribers who are not well-versed on how to manage their investment, can opt for the auto or default choice, under which they can choose conservative, moderate, or aggressive life cycle fund.
  • The subscribers are given the option to continue contributing to NPS even after retirement but only up to 70 years of age. Individuals can choose to defer the lump sum withdrawal and annuity payment for a maximum of 3 years after exit but only till 70 years of age.
  • Upon reaching superannuation or exit, subscribers will get 40% of the corpus to purchase annuity and the remaining 60% in a lump sum withdrawal. If the total corpus is less than Rs.2 lakh then the subscriber can withdraw the whole amount in a lump sum at the time of exit.
  • Premature exit in NPS (before completion of 3 years) results in 80% of the corpus being used to purchase annuity while the rest can be withdrawn as a lump sum. If the total accumulated corpus is less than Rs.1 lakh at the time of premature exit, then the subscriber can withdraw the entire amount in a lump sum.
  • Partial withdrawals are allowed up to 3 times for the entire tenure, subject to completion of 3 years. For reasons such as house construction/purchase, higher education, treatment of life-threatening diseases, etc., subscribers can withdraw up to 25% of the corpus. Partial withdrawals are tax exempted.

Societies or trusts, proprietorship concerns, registered Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs), state and central public sector enterprises, and entities registered under the Co-operative Acts and Companies Act can join the NPS-Corporate Model.

NPS Helpline

NDSL offers a myriad of helpline services to attend the concerns of NPS subscribers. You can reach out to NPS customer care cell on their toll free number or contact any of the NDSL branches for all information related to your NPS account. Given below are the details:

  • NPS Toll Free Number: 1800222080
  • Mumbai Branch, NSDL e-Governance Infrastructure Limited 1st Floor, Times Tower, Kamala Mills Compound, Senapati Bapat Marg, Lower Parel, Mumbai- 400013, Phone: 022 40904242
  • Kolkata Branch, 5th Floor, The Millenium, Flat No. 5W, 235/2A, Acharya Jagdish Chandra Bose Road, Kolkata - 700 020, Phone: 033 22814461/ 22901396
  • Chennai Branch, 6A, 6th Floor, Kences Towers, #1 Ramkrishna Street, North Usman Road, T. Nagar, Chennai - 600 017, Phone: 044 2814 3917/18
  • New Delhi Branch, 409/410, Ashoka Estate Building, 4th floor, Barakhamba Road, Connaught Place, New Delhi - 110 001, Phone: 011 23705418/2335381
  • Ahmedabad Branch, Unit No. 407, 4th floor, 3rd Eye One Commercial Complex Co-op. Soc. Ltd., Above Vijay Sales Stores C. G. Road, Near Panchvati Circle, Ahmedabad - 380 006, Phone: 079 26461376

NPS is one of the most affordable pension solutions that comes with a multitude of features and benefits. Deposits under NPS Schemes accumulate higher interests due to the equity fraction linked with the investments. The scheme which was available only for government employees was opened to the general public in 2009. NPS which is currently in its developing stages is expected to offer greater benefits as it gains momentum


1. Following retirement, are employees engaged in government service eligible for leave encasement as per the guidelines of the NPS?

No. Leave encasement is not allowed as per the guidelines laid down by the CCS and does not count as a component of the benefits available to the employee after retirement.

2. What is the reason behind the compulsory utilization of a minimum of 40% of the accumulated pension funds to buy annuities after retirement?

The main reason behind this move is to ensure employees in government service will still obtain a regular and stable income every month following their retirement.

3. Which body is responsible for the calculation of interest with regards to the NPS?

The interest is calculated by the The Pension Accounting Office, who is the official body appointed for this particular task

4. Which agency or office will be responsible for contribution deductions In the event of the transfer of an employee during the course of the month?

The office that draws the salary of the subscriber for the maximum amount of time during the month will be responsible for the deduction of contribution towards the NPS

5. What are the KYC documents required to enroll for NPS through SBI?

The following documents are required to be submitted at the time of making the application:

  • Subscriber registration form
  • Photo ID proof
  • Proof for Date of Birth
  • Proof of residence

6. What are the different modes of payments available with SBI Pension Funds Pvt. Ltd.?

The following modes are accepted by SBI for NPS premium payments:

  • Direct payment at an SBI Life branch
  • Through standing order on credit card
  • Online payments
  • Electronic Clearing Service
  • Payments through SBI Life’s mobile app
  • Through National Automated Clearing House (NACH)
  • Through POS terminals at authorized SBI Life branches

7. How to check the status of your NPS account in SBI?

Simply login to the SBI Life customer portal and fill in details such as Customer ID and NPS policy number to view your current status.

8. What are the minimum contribution amounts for Tier I and Tier II accounts?

The minimum contribution amount for Tier I accounts is Rs.500 per month and that for Tier II accounts is Rs.250 per month. Subscribers should also maintain a minimum balance of Rs.6000 for Tier I and Rs.2000 for Tier II at the end of the year.

9. How does SBI settle the NPS claims?

You need to submit the settlement form along with the essential documents for claim settlement at the branch where you maintain your NPS account. For details on claim settlements you can send an email to The final decision on claims will be based on the disclosures made in the proposal form by the subscriber.

10. Who provides annuity on withdrawal or maturity under NPS?

The insurance companies licensed by the IRDA and authorized by the PFRDA act as the annuity service providers to NPS subscribers.

11. Is NPS an easily accessible system of long term investments?

NPS is a cost effective, flexible and portable retirement savings scheme in which the wealth accumulated depends on the contributions made by the individual.

12. How many subscribers does NPS have?

The total number of NPS subscribers as on 30 Dec, 2016 is 1,02,76,250.

13. What are the features of NPS app?

Using the NPS app, you can raise a request for transaction statement for the particular fiscal year. You can also view the details of scheme wise units and update your contact information.

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News About NPS

  • Minimum Assured Return Option can be Chosen by NPS Subscribers

    There is super great news for the existing investors or soon-to-be investors of the National Pension System or NPS. The pension fund regulator has been working to establish a scheme that will essentially give the subscribers the option to choose the fund option that gives out minimum assured returns on a regular basis. National Pension System is the Indian Government’s flagship social security programme and it has been benefitting millions of Indians for over a decade now.

    It has been learnt that the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority of India has gotten in touch with actuarial firms and has invited an Expression of Interest (EoI) from them to develop and design and in turn recommend a minimum assured return scheme or MARS that can in turn be implemented under the infrastructure of the National Pension System in India. This potentially beneficial structure will include the exit load component and exit the penalty recommendation with regards to MARS. Once MARS has been implemented, it will ensure that the NPS subscribers are receiving a minimum assured return over a certain period of time. If there is a lag in the programme, the amount will then be compensated by the sponsor of the scheme.

    There are talks of implementation of a guarantee reset period that can be set according to the subscriber’s interest as well as the pension funds. The reset period can be set either annually, half-yearly, or quarterly.

    26 February 2019

  • NPS subscribers might get to choose funds with minimum assured return

    National Pension System (NPS) subscribers might get the freedom to select the fund option coming with a minimum assured return soon. An Expression of Interest has been invited by the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) from top Actuarial companies to design and develop a Minimum Assured Return Scheme (MARS) for the subscribers of NPS. PFRDA have asked them to create and develop a minimum assured return scheme which can be executed under the NPS infrastructure. As a matter of fact, the NPS returns are presently connected to the performance of the underlying instruments like debt, equity or both. NPS which was started as a contributory pension scheme might get changed after the implementation of MARS and it might not give fixed returns anymore. Instead, it might give minimum return over a certain period. However, it is expected that there might be a guarantee reset period like quarterly, half yearly, annual, or any other recommended time period to balance the interest of the subscriber and the Pension Funds offering such products.

    19 February 2019

  • Union Government Proposed New Pension Scheme for Unorganised Sector

    The Union Government led by the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, has recently proposed a new pension scheme for employees working in the unorganised sector. During the Budget speech on 1 February 2019, the Finance Minister - Piyush Goyal – stated that the government intends to introduce a mega pension scheme for the unorganised sector employees who earn up to Rs.15,000 per month. Named as Pradhan Mantri Shram-Yogi Maandhan, this pension scheme will offer them an assured monthly pension of Rs.3,000 after attaining the age of 60 years. Individuals can enrol for this plan by contributing a small affordable amount on a monthly basis during the years of their employment.

    The Finance Minister further mentioned that a worker from the unorganised sector joining this pension scheme at the age of 29 years will have to contribute only Rs.100 per month till he/she is 60 years old. On the other hand, a monthly contribution of Rs.55 only will be required for an employee joining the pension scheme at 18 years of age. Apart from the employees’ contribution, the government will deposit an equal amount in the employee’s pension account each month. Approximately 10 crore labourers and workers who are working in the unorganised sector are expected to be able to benefit from the Pradhan Mantri Shram-Yogi Maandhan in the next 5 years.

    18 February 2019

  • Rs.10,000 crore to be released by government for NPS

    As their share, the government will soon release arrears of Rs.10,000 crore for the National Pension System (NPS) for state employees according to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. The chief minister further added that the government’s share towards NPS has increased from 10% to 14%.

    NPS was introduced by the government in 2004 for its employees, but in 2009 became available for all Indian citizens. On retirement, subscribers can withdraw a portion of the amount as a lump sum and the rest must be used to buy annuity that can used for income after retirement. Tier-I and Tier-II are the two types of NPS accounts available.

    15 February 2019

  • Minimum Wages of Labours records a growth of 42% over the last 5 years

    The minimum wages of labourers from all the classes have registered an increase of 42%. This increase is the highest amount of increase ever recorded. The formalisation of the economy and the high amount of growth recorded has resulted in the improvement of employment opportunities as we can see from the EPFO membership. The increase is by around 2 crores in as many years, showing the formalisation that has happened with the economy. The New Pension Scheme has been liberalised and the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission were also implemented. The contribution from the government to the New Pension Scheme has also been increased to 14% from the 10% that was in place previously. Gratuity payment limit has also been increased to Rs.20 lakh. This is an increase of Rs.10 lakh from the previous limit. The eligibility cover limit of ESIC has also been increased from the existing Rs.15,000 to Rs.21,000 for one month. A minimum pension of Rs.1,000 has been fixed for all labours. In case the labour meets with an unfortunate incident resulting in death, the contribution to EPFO will increase to Rs.6 lakh from the existing Rs.2.5 lakh. Payment for labours under the Asha scheme and Anganwadi scheme has increase by close to 50%.

    5 February 2019

  • NPS subscribers and government officials to resubmit partial withdrawal forms by January 31

    Subscribers have been asked to resubmit completed partial withdrawal form and documents in physical form by the National Pension Scheme (NPS) trust. This is applicable for those who have requested for online partial withdrawal till 30 November 2018.

    Applications will be treated as withdrawn if hard copy and documents are not submitted to the nodal office by 31 January 2019. NPS subscribers will need to submit the documents and partial withdrawal form to the nearest Point of Presence (POP), while the nodal office for government sector subscribers will be the Drawing and Disbursing Office, Pay & Accounts Office, or the District Treasury Office. POP will be the nodal office for all others.

    9 January 2019

  • Cabinet approves raising Government Contribution to NPS to 14%

    The Cabinet has recently raised the contribution of the government towards the National Pension Scheme (NPS) to 14% of the basic salary from the present rate of 10%. However, the minimum employee contribution will remain 10%.

    The Cabinet has also approved tax incentives for employees’ contribution to the extent of 10% under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act. At present, the contribution made by the government and the employee towards the NPS is 10% of the basic salary each. While the minimum contribution remains at 10% for the employees, the government contribution has been raised to 14% from 10%. The Cabinet, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has also allowed the government employees to commute 60% of the fund collected at the time of retirement, up from 40% at present. Sources have also revealed that the employees will now have the option to invest in either fixed income instruments or equities. The government is yet to decide the date of notification of the new scheme. Sources are of the opinion, that the new scheme will come into effect in the next financial year.

    13 December 2018

  • Tax exemption for NPS withdrawal now 100%

    Investors in the National Pension Scheme (NPS) can withdraw 60% of the corpus fund on maturity and have to invest the remaining 40% in buying an annuity. The 60% that can be withdrawn has now been given 100% tax exemption by the government. As of now, 40% of the amount that is withdrawn was tax free with 20% being taxable.

    The tax exemption has made NPS on par with the Employee Provident Fund and Public Provident Fund since the principal amount is not taxable at all. The Central Government’s contribution to the NPS was also raised to 14% of the salary from the 10% that it is currently. This makes the NPS better than the pension which was defined under the old system since pensioners get a pension of 50% of the salary that was drawn last. Central government employees are now also able to decide their investment patterns and choose their pension funds. When government employees invest in the Tier II NPS funds, it is now eligible for tax deduction under Section 80C, but only if there is a 3-year lock-in period. Since the expense ratios of the funds in NPS are very low, at 0.01%, it results in even greater returns.

    12 December 2018

  • Government raises NPS contribution by 14%

    The Central Government’s contribution to the National Pension Scheme will see an increase of 14% from 10%. For withdrawal of lump sum on exit, the tax exemption limit has been raised to 60%. This will result in exemption of income tax for the total withdrawal. Central government employees will now be able to choose their pattern of investment as well as have a choice in the pension funds. The contribution of government employees under NPS Tier-II will have a deduction of up to Rs.1.5 lakh under Section 80 C. This is for income tax purposes which is on par with schemes such as Public Provident Fund, General Provident Fund, Employees’ Provident Fund, and Contributory Provident Fund. However, this is subject to a 3-year lock-in period.

    11 December 2018

  • Government increases its contribution to the National Pension Scheme

    The government’s contribution to the National Pension Scheme (NPS) has been raised to 14% from the 10% currently of the basic salary. The employee contribution remains the same at 10% minimum. There are also tax benefits for the employee contribution of up to 10% under 80C of the Income Tax Act. Apart from these new features, the Cabinet also approved the commutation of up to 60% of the funds that are accumulated at the time of retirement, which is now at 40%. If, however, the employee transfers the accumulated funds (100%) in his NPS account at the time of retirement to the annuity scheme, his pension would exceed 50% of the last drawn salary. These changes might be effective from April 1, 2019. The formula for these changes were drawn out on a government-appointed committee’s recommendation by the Finance Ministry.

    10 December 2018

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