The Central Government, with a view to bring privately held stock of gold in circulation, to reduce the country’s reliance on import of gold and to provide its owners with some income apart from freeing them from the problems of storage, movement and security of gold in their possession, had notified the Gold Deposit Scheme (GDS) on September 15, 1999. Some of the salient features of the scheme inter-alia include the following:
· All designated banks may operate GDS as per the Guidelines issued by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
· Gold (bars, coins, jewellery etc) is accepted in scrap form only.
· Resident Indians may invest in GDS.
· The banks issue a passbook or certificate for deposit of gold to the depositor.
· The Gold Certificate is repaid in gold. Such repayment may also be made in rupee equivalent to the price of gold as on the date of maturity at the option of the subscriber.
· Premature payment, either in the form of gold or in cash equivalent to the price of gold on the date of encashment is allowed after the initial lock-in period.
· Individual banks are free to fix the interest rates.
· The maturity period of gold deposits range from six months to seven years.
· The interest earned is exempt from Income Tax, Wealth Tax and Capital Gains Tax.
The Government has no proposal to limit deposits under the proposed GDS to 100 grams.
The gold garnered through GDS is mobilized as gold loans to domestic jewellery industry. GDS aims to reduce the country’s reliance on import of gold and curb the Current Account Deficit.
Source : PIB