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Pravasi Pension Scheme for Non-Resident Keralites

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For non-resident Keralites, purchasing a pension plan in India can provide financial security during their retirement years. As such individuals may not have access to social security benefits in their country of residence, a pension plan can offer a steady stream of income to cover their expenses.

Additionally, linking the Pravasi pension plan to the Pravasi Welfare Fund can provide additional benefits such as medical insurance, housing loans, and education loans for their children. The Pravasi Welfare Fund was established by the Government of Kerala to provide financial support and assistance to non-resident Keralites.

By investing in a Pravasi pension plan and linking it to the Pravasi Welfare Fund, non-resident Keralites can ensure their financial security and also contribute to the welfare of their home state. It is a wise investment for those who wish to plan for their future while also supporting their community.

Let’s find out more about the characteristics, advantages, and application procedure of this special retirement plan.

About Kerala Pravasi Welfare Fund Board

Before diving deeper into the Pravasi Pension Scheme, let’s first know more about the Kerala Pravasi Welfare Board. This board is the result of a determined effort by the Kerala government to establish a welfare fund that would offer non-resident Keralites benefit programmes. To this end, the Kerala Non-Resident Keralites' Welfare Act, 2008 was a measure that the government introduced and enacted.

Since then, over 4 lakh non-resident Keralites (NRKs) have joined the Welfare Fund as members. After working abroad for at least two years, NRKs who have now moved permanently back to India are also eligible for participation in this Welfare Fund. 

Pravasi Pension Scheme: An Overview

After the Kerala Non-Resident Welfare Act was implemented in 2008, the Pravasi pension system was established as a retirement plan. It is mainly intended for middle and low-income residents who leave Kerala in search of employment but plan to retire there. The programme intends to give Keralites security and stability after retirement.

Members of this plan must make monthly contributions in order to receive a pension when they reach the age of 60. Depending on the contribution, one can receive a minimum pension of Rs. 2,000 each month. Until retirement, members must make continual contributions to the plan - the account will be terminated if they don’t make any contributions for a year. 

Features and Benefits of the Pravasi Pension Scheme

A few characteristics and advantages of the Kerala Pravasi Welfare Fund are listed below -

  • To be eligible to receive benefits from the Pravasi Welfare Fund, eligible individuals must register with the Kerala Pravasi Welfare Board and send in the required monthly contributions.
  • After reaching the age of 60, contributing members will get the appropriate Pravasi Pension amount.
  • In exchange for continuing to contribute to the Kerala Pravasi Welfare Fund up to the age of 60, contributing members would get a minimum monthly Pravasi Pension of Rs. 2000 after reaching retirement age.
  • After completing 5 years of contributions, participants of the Kerala Pravasi Pension Scheme would receive an annual bonus of 3% of the minimum Pravasi Pension amount.
  • For NRKs situated outside of India, the minimum monthly donation is Rs. 300; for NRKs located inside India, it is Rs. 100.
  • The registration will be terminated in case there are no donations for a full year.
  • 5 years is the bare minimum for contributing.
  • The Pravasi Pension Scheme is not available to employees of the Central or State governments.

Who All are Eligible for Pravasi Pension Scheme?

You must initially fall within the age range of 18 and 60 years in order to be eligible for the Pravasi pension. You must also fit into any of the following categories - 

  • Keralite working somewhere other than India who is not a resident
  • Keralite who just made permanent repatriation to Kerala after working overseas for at least two years
  • Non-resident Keralite who has worked for at least six months outside of Kerala and in another Indian state

When filing an application for the Pravasi pension, you must also pay a registration fee of Rs. 200 to be eligible, as the processing of your application won’t be possible without the registration fee.

You are eligible to begin a Pravasi Pension sheme if you are between the ages of 55 and 60 years, but you must make contributions to the plan for at least five years before you can draw a pension.

Documents Required to Apply for Pravasi Pension Scheme

For registration with the Pravasi Welfare Fund, the non-resident Keralites have to fill out the following application forms - 

  • Form 1A: NRKs - This form should be filled out by the non-resident Keralites working overseas.
  • Form 1B - This application form has to be filled in by non-resident Keralites who have repatriated from overseas and are now settled in Kerala.
  • Form 2A - This form should be completed by non-resident Keralites settled in India but in a state other than Kerala. 
  • Identification Proof - Valid passport, birth certificate, AADHAR Card, and Voter ID Card
  • Address Proof - Utility bills, passport, and AADHAR Card
  • Other Important Documents Required - Valid visa, passport, recent passport-sized photographs, and a digital copy of the non-resident Keralite’s sign. 

Application Procedure Kerala Pravasi Welfare Fund

On the Kerala Pravasi Welfare Board's official website, qualified non-resident Keralites can enrol for the Pravasi pension plan online. By submitting your paperwork at a typical service centre in Kerala, you can also enrol for the programme offline. You will be guided through the process of registering online in the steps that follow.

  • The 'Service' tab can be found on the official website.
  • Go to ‘Apply online’ and tap on it, which will send you to a new page.
  • Next, choose a new registration as per your category. You can apply for the programme under one of three categories. Select 1A if you have a job overseas. On the other hand, 1B refers to returning to India after at least two years away, while 2A refers to working outside Kerala but still inside the boundaries of India.
  • Using the provided instructions, complete the form with the necessary data.
  • All required documents should be uploaded as digital copies.
  • When you are ready to send in your application form and settle the enrollment fees, click on ‘'submit’.

Other Types of Benefits Under Pravasi Pension Sheme

Various scenarios allow for the claim of the Pravasi welfare scheme's benefits. The numerous circumstances listed below pertain to how you, as an eligible member, may request funds from the programme -

  • Pravasi Pension Scheme - The plan bases the monthly pension payment on the contribution. After the participants turn 60 years old, a basic pension of Rs 2,000 every month is paid.
  • Pravasi Family Pension Scheme - The beneficiary is entitled to the pension amount if the scheme member passes away. Depending on the member classification, the pension amount may change.
  • For Financial Assistance in Case of Maternity - A female member who has paid dues for at least two years in a row and is enrolled may request financial aid to help with maternity or costs related to medically-necessary abortions.
  • Claim Works as an Educational Grant - Members who have made contributions for at least two years in a row are eligible to submit an application for an educational fund for their kids. The award is permitted under the plan for ITI/ITC degrees and professional post-graduate studies.
  • Housing Loan Pension Scheme - The Kerala Pravasi Welfare Board offers housing loans to members who have paid dues for at least five years straight. These loans can be used to build a new home, buy land for the purpose of building a home, renovate an existing building, or buy land along with a building.
  • Payment for Medical Assistance  - An enrolled member who receives a critical illness diagnosis is eligible to receive up to Rs 50,000 in compensation. However, they are not eligible for any benefits under federal, state, or municipal welfare programmes.
  • Financial Assistance for Marriage - An incentive of Rs 10,000 for a child's marriage is available to enrolled members who have made contributions for at least three years. It must be noted that if more than one family member is engaged in the programme, only one member may apply for the benefit.
  • Pravasi Pension Scheme for Invalids - Members of the Kerala Pravasi Welfare Fund who stopped making contributions after three years due to physical or mental limitations are entitled to receive an irregular pension amount. However, they must also present a valid incapacity condition that makes doing any physical activity impossible, as well as a doctor's certificate.
  • Financial Aid for Dependents of the Deceased Member of the Scheme - If the passing of a member falls under 1A, the family can receive up to Rs 50,000, and if they fall under 1B, they can receive up to Rs 30,000.
  • Insurance Programme in Case of an Accident, Death, or Health Condition - The Pravasi Pension Scheme offers financial support to the family in the event that a member passes away due to an accident or medical complications. However, this support is extended only after receiving approval from a government agency and joining up with one of the centralised insurance firms.
  • Due to age requirements (maximum entry age: 55 years old), non-resident Keralites are eligible to qualify for various government benefits - 
    • For minor ailments, Rs 10,000 in medical financial aid is provided, and Rs 25,000 for serious illnesses.
    • The Kerala Pravasi Welfare Board has authorised the provision of pensions or lump sums as old-age financial assistance.
    • The family of a non-resident Keralite who dies before age 60 and is not enrolled in the programme will get a payout of Rs 10,000 from the Kerala Pravasi Welfare Board.

How to Pay for Pravasi Welfare Fund?

Regardless of your category, you have to pay a registration fee of Rs 200 to sign up for the programme. However, after you sign up for the programme, your organisation determines the monthly contribution.

Keralites who are not residents of India and those who have just returned from abroad must contribute a minimum of Rs 100 every month. However, employees who work abroad are required to make a minimum monthly payment of Rs 300.

FAQ's

Q1. How can you apply for the Pravasi Pension Scheme in Kerala?

Ans: If you qualify for the Pravasi pension scheme, you can enlist in the programme, make contributions for at least five years, and receive a monthly annuity of Rs 2,000 at reaching the age of 60.

Q2. How can you file a claim under the Pravasi Pension Scheme after 60 years?

Ans: Once a member of the Pravasi Welfare Fund reaches a retirement age of 60 years, the Pravasi Pension is paid straight into their bank account. If a non-resident Keralite makes consistent contributions to the Pravasi Kshemanidhi for five years, they are given a monthly pension.

Q3. How can you check your Pravasi Welfare Fund status?

Ans: Your application's status can be checked on the Pravasi Kerala online portal. To access your account, make sure to have the application or passport information handy.

Q4. How can you pay for Kerala Pravasi Welfare Fund as a Non-resident Keralite?

Ans: At the Kerala Pravasi Welfare Board website, you can make your monthly payment electronically. As an alternative, you can make your donation in person at any bank.

Q5. What are the eligibility criteria for the Pravasi Pension Scheme?

Ans: The programme aims to assist non-resident Keralites in their retirement or at the conclusion of their employment abroad. It should be mentioned that Kerala residents who are currently covered by the State or Central Government Pension Scheme are not eligible for the programme.

Q6. What is the amount to be paid under the Pravasi Pension Scheme?

Ans: A pension of at least Rs 2,000 per month is available to eligible members who have contributed for a minimum of five years in a row.

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