India’s Public Provident Fund (PPF) Scheme is a government-backed low risk long term investment option that has been popular among risk-averse investors for decades. Even though various market-linked investment options are currently available, many investors still prefer PPF as their preferred investment route due to the combined benefit of guaranteed returns and tax savings. In India, you can open a PPF account in three leading private sector banks and the ICICI Bank Public Provident Fund (ICICI PPF) account is one of the most popular options out there.
The Ministry of Finance determines the applicable interest rate on all PPF accounts irrespective of whether the account is held with an India Post Office, a public sector bank or a private sector bank. ICICI Bank PPF account interest rate may change as per announcements made by the Ministry of Finance in every quarter. ICICI Bank PPF account interest rates for the current as well as for the historical periods are as follows* :
|Time Period||Interest Rate (%)|
|Q3 FY 2018-19||8.0|
|Q2 FY 2018-19||7.6|
|Q1 FY 2018-19||7.6|
|Q4 FY 2017-18||7.6|
|Q3 FY 2017-18||7.8|
|Q2 FY 2017-18||7.8|
|Q1 FY 2017-18||7.9|
*ICICI Bank PPF account balance is compounded annually. PPF interest rate for Q3 FY 2018-19 will be in effective during the 1st October 2018 to 31st December 2018 period.
How to Open ICICI Bank PPF Account
ICICI Bank is one of the few banks offering PPF account in India that allows you to complete the process online. Alternately, you can also avail the offline PPF account opening option provided by ICICI Bank. Key features and steps of the online account opening process of ICICI PPF account is as follows :
- You can open your ICICI Bank PPF account online instantly if you are an existing ICICI Bank customer.
- Use your ICICI Bank online banking credentials to sign into your ICICI account and choose the online PPF account opening option at the time of logging in.
- On subsequent pages, fill out/confirm requisite details including PAN, Aadhaar number, nominee, etc. to complete the account opening procedure.
- The initial deposit required to open an ICICI Bank PPF account can be made using the bank’s online banking system.
- In case, any documents need to be submitted, you may have to visit your nearby ICICI Bank branch to complete the process.
- Once the online ICICI Bank PPF account is up and running, you can collect your PPF account passbook from the bank branch.
Offline Procedure for Opening ICICI PPF Account
In certain cases, the offline route of account opening is mandatory. For example if you are opening a PPF account on behalf of your minor child or in case you do not have online banking activated on your account. The following are key pointers for opening your ICICI PPF account offline:
- You can download the ICICI PPF account opening Form A from the bank website to visit your nearby ICICI Bank branch to get a paper form.
- Completely fill out the form along with signatures on appropriate pages and attach self attested copies of necessary KYC documents/photographs, etc.
- Subsequently you will need to submit the filled out form along with necessary documents and photographs at the nearby ICICI Bank branch.
- Please carry originals of all relevant KYC documents such as PAN, Aadhaar, etc. for verification purposes.
- Once the account has been opened, you will receive your ICICI PPF account passbook with all entries related to transactions made on the account.
The eligibility requirements for opening an ICICI Bank Public Provident Fund account are as follows :
- Resident Indians can open ICICI Bank PPF accounts.
- NRIs (Non-Resident Indians) cannot open new ICICI Bank PPF account. However, if a PPF account was opened prior to a resident Indian becoming NRI such an account may be continued till maturity.
- No age limit has currently been specified for those opening a PPF Account in ICICI Bank.
- Joint holding of ICICI PPF Account is not permitted as per existing rules.
- Hindu Undivided Family (HUF) is not allowed to open/operate public provident fund account.
- You are allowed to open and operate a minor PPF account in case you are the parent/guardian of the minor child. The number of minor accounts allowed is limited to one for each minor child.
Some key features and benefits of India’s Public Provident Fund Scheme are as follows:
- Minimum yearly deposit required to keep your ICICI PPF account operational is Rs. 500.
- ICICI PPF account can be used to deposit a maximum of Rs. 1.5 lakhs in a year.
- The maximum number of deposits you can make annually in your ICICI PPF account is capped at 12. But the total value of such deposits must not exceed Rs. 1.5 lakhs
- ICICI PPF account can accept both offline (cash/DD/cheque) and online (mobile/net banking) deposits.
You have to mandatorily provide KYC documents at the time of opening an ICICI Bank PPF account:
- Completely filled out and signed ICICI Bank Public Provident Fund account opening form.
- Photograph of applicant.
- Self attested copies of ID proof – Aadhaar, PAN, Voter ID, Driving License, etc.
- Address Proof – Aadhaar Card, Passport, recent utility bills, etc.
Mode of Deposit in ICICI PPF Account
You can deposit money into ICICI Bank PPF Account either by offline means i.e. by cash or cheque as well as through online methods such as mobile or internet banking . The following are some pointers about available modes for making PPF account deposits –
- You can choose to link your existing ICICI Bank savings or current account with your ICICI Bank Public Provident Fund account to make instant online transfers.
- You can also make deposits into your ICICI PPF account through other bank accounts using online interbank transfer methods such NEFT, ECS and standing instructions.
- In case you want to make offline PPF deposits, you have the option of using either cash or cheque.
Loan Against PPF Account from ICICI Bank
If you have an ICICI Bank Public Provident Fund account in good standing, you may be eligible to avail a loan against your PPF account balance. The loan against PPF facility from ICICI Bank can currently be availed only from the 3rd year to 6th year of the PPF account operation calculated from date of account opening.
ICICI PPF Balance Check
As an ICICI PPF account holder you have the option to easily check your PPF account balance online or offline. Additional online facilities include viewing transaction details i.e. all applicable debits/credits that have occurred on the account. The following are key factors to consider when checking the ICICI Bank PPF balance online or offline:
- To check ICICI Bank PPF account balance online, you will need to link your ICICI Bank savings or current account with your ICICI PPF account, if not done already.
- Be sure that you have internet/mobile banking activated for your ICICI account(s).
- Subsequently, you can log into your ICICI online banking account using net banking or mobile banking credentials and easily check your PPF account balance online.
- In order to check your PPF account balance offline, you can get your PPF passbook updated at the nearby ICICI Bank branch. Your passbook contains key details of various credits and debits that have occurred on your ICICI PPF account till date of the update.
ICICI Bank PPF Withdrawal
The following are key facts about the withdrawal of ICICI Bank PPF account balance:
- You can complete partial withdrawal of your ICICI bank PPF account balance after 5 years of account operation calculated from completion of 1st year of PPF account subscription.
- The maximum premature withdrawal amount from your ICICI PPF account is calculated at 50% of the clear balance in your PPF account in the year preceding the withdrawal.