10 year olds can operate own bank accounts: RBI

The Reserve Bank of India logo is pictured outside its head office in Mumbai

The RBI yesterday has announced that from now on, children above 10 years can open and maintain their own savings bank accounts in a move to improve financial inclusion. These accounts should be allowed facilities like internet banking, ATM debit card and chequebooks, the RBI said. These accounts should never be overdrawn, added the banking regulatory agency.

But banks can formulate their own rules regarding these accounts, with regards to their own admittance age, how much balance they will be allowed to maintain, the details and documents to be submitted to open such accounts.

In another significant change of rules, the RBI has quashed levying charges on non operative savings accounts with less than minimum balance. There have been instances where account holders, who have not transacted in a bank account and desired to close it, were told by the banks that they have run into minus balance and are asked to pay the bank dues in return. Services on offer to those non operative accounts should be suspended to avoid levying fines and should be restored when the balance passes the stipulated minimum level so as to avoid charging the customers in return, said the agency.

Medaram Jathara

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