National Pension System (NPS) subscribers can now opt for e-PRAN card at cheaper rates. Pension fund regulator PFRDA has given subscribers the option of choosing in between physical and e-PRAN cards with both being treated equivalent for all purposes.
‘NPS subscribes have hitherto been provided with a physical PRAN (Permanent Retirement Account Number) card along with the welcome kit. In order to give them a choice to optimise the cost i.e. the account opening charges payable to Central Record keeping Agencies (CRA), it has now been decided that a subscriber may, either opt for physical PRAN card or e-PRAN (PRAN received through email) along with the option to receive welcome kit as well, either physically or through email,’ PFRDA said in a circular.
NPS account opening charges:
To open a Permanent Retirement Account (PRA) under NPS, you can choose two agencies namely NCRA (NSDL-CRA) and KCRA (Karvy-CRA).
- Physical PRAN card: PRA opening charges is Rs 40 for NCRA and Rs 39.36 for KCRA.
- e-PRAN card: Under KCRA, PRA opening charges drops to just Rs 4 if you opt for ePRAN card and get welcome kit also sent by email. NCRA will charge you Rs 18 for the same.
The Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) said both physical and e-PRAN shall be considered at par whenever presented for identification, servicing, exit or any other NPS related processing.
If you chose e-PRAN while opening a new NPS account but want to get a physical PRAN card at a later stage, you can request for it by paying extra.
PFRDA has recently started onboarding new NPS subscribers in a paperless manner through e-signature and one-time password (OTP) based system.
For opening of NPS accounts through non-internet banking digital mode through POPs (banks as well as non-bank POPs), OTP received on their registered mobile number and e-mail can be used for paperless NPS account opening.
PFRDA administers more than 3.60 crore subscribers under the National Pension System with an aggregate Assets Under Management (AUM) of more than Rs 4.55 lakh crore.