New Delhi: The tradition of saving for hard times in future has met with a setback as the common man reeling under price rise and inflation is forced to withdraw money to save his skin in the present scenario of economic slowdown. As a result, Rs 15,000 crore has already been withdrawn in comparison with the rate of deposits in this fiscal.

According to the Finance Ministry, during April to September, 2011, high rate of withdrawal was observed in General and Fixed Deposit post office schemes, Senior Citizens Savings Scheme and Monthly Income Schemes with only Recurring Savings Scheme as an exception.

While only Rs 1,64,578.86 crore have been deposited in other saving schemes during the first half of the current fiscal, Rs 15,344 crore more have been withdrawn in the same period. The savings in the post offices have also witnessed 50 percent decline in the current financial year.

As told by the experts, the medium and lower middle class people invest in small savings schemes of the post office for special purposes with less frequent withdrawals. However, the records reveal that more amount is being withdrawn from the monthly savings schemes. The trend also implies in senior citizen schemes of other banks from which Rs 1974.03 crore more have been withdrawn this fiscal.

Observing the records of 2008-09, the withdrawal to deposit ratio was high but excessive withdrawal from small savings now can add to the troubles of the Centre. The reason being, the capital of the small savings scheme goes to National Small Savings Fund (NSSF) which is distributed by the Centre to the states under its annual plans.

According to the Finance Ministry officials, less NSSF funds implies less allocation of funds to the states from the Central pool.

JPN/Bureau