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PMVVY vs SCSS: Which Investment Scheme is Best for Senior Citizens?


Which Investment is Best for Senior Citizens?

As senior citizens search for safe investment alternatives due to dwindling bank interest rates on fixed deposits, two prominent options have emerged on their radar: the Pradhan Mantri Vaya Vandana Yojana (PMVVY) and the Senior Citizen Saving Scheme (SCSS). Both schemes are designed for senior citizens aged 60 and above, offering them financial security during retirement. While both options share similarities, they also have key differences that can significantly impact an individual’s investment decision.


1. Investment Limits and Eligibility

PMVVY and SCSS allow senior citizens to invest up to Rs 15 lakhs in each scheme. An individual must be at least 60 years old to be eligible for these schemes. This commonality in investment limits and age eligibility is a foundation for comparing the two.

2. Tenure

The maturity period is one of the most notable distinctions between PMVVY and SCSS. The SCSS has a five-year fixed maturity period, with the option to extend it for an additional three years in blocks. On the other hand, PMVVY boasts a more extended maturity period of 10 years. This difference in tenure is a crucial factor for investors to consider, as it can impact their liquidity and long-term financial planning.

3. Returns

Regarding returns, PMVVY offers a fixed annual return of 7.4%. In contrast, the interest rate for SCSS may fluctuate every quarter. As of the October-November-December quarter of 2023, SCSS also offered a 7.4% interest rate. Both these schemes provide superior returns compared to traditional fixed deposits in banks, which typically yield 5%-6% per annum. The guaranteed return in PMVVY may appeal to those prioritising stable income.

4. Payout Options

Another significant distinction lies in the payout options. In SCSS, investors receive regular income in the form of quarterly pensions. PMVVY, however, offers more flexibility by allowing investors to choose from monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, or annual income payouts. This flexibility can benefit senior citizens with varying financial needs throughout their retirement.

5. Taxation

Taxation is an important consideration for any investment. Contributions to the SCSS scheme are tax-deductible under Section 80C, providing a tax benefit of up to Rs 1.5 lakh. In contrast, no such tax benefit is available for investments in the PMVVY scheme. Additionally, both schemes do not offer any tax exemption on the income earned after maturity. This tax disparity can significantly impact the overall returns for investors.

6. Premature Withdrawal

For those who may need access to their invested funds before the maturity period, SCSS has an advantage. Investors can make premature withdrawals from the SCSS scheme before completing five years, albeit with a penalty. In contrast, withdrawing funds from PMVVY before the full 10-year maturity period can be challenging. This lack of liquidity in PMVVY may deter those who anticipate needing access to their funds in the short term.


In conclusion, PMVVY and SCSS ultimately hinge on an individual’s financial goals, risk tolerance, and liquidity needs. PMVVY offers a stable, guaranteed return over a more extended period, making it suitable for those seeking a reliable income source during retirement. On the other hand, SCSS provides greater flexibility, favourable tax benefits, and the option for premature withdrawals, making it more attractive for individuals who value liquidity and tax advantages.


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