Context: The flagship social security scheme of Government of India ‘Atal Pension Yojana’ (APY) has completed five years of successful implementation. 

More on the news:

  • The scheme even after garnering 2.23 crores workers under the ambit of pension still remains unequivocally relevant for addressing the challenges of rapidly increasing aging population of India. 
  • Apart from remarkable enrolments, the scheme has been implemented comprehensively across the country covering all states and Union Territories with male to female subscription ratio of 57:43.
  • According to the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA), which administers Atal Pension Yojana, this feat was possible only with the untiring efforts of Public & Private Banks, Regional Rural Banks, Payments Banks, Small Finance Banks, Department of Posts and the support extended by the State Level Bankers’ Committees’.


About the scheme: 

  • APY was launched on 9th May 2015 with an objective of delivering old age income security particularly to the workers in the unorganised sector and Government providing guarantee of minimum pension after 60 years of age. 
  • APY can be subscribed by any Indian citizen in the age group of 18-40 years having a bank account and its uniqueness is attributable to three distinctive benefits
    1. It provides a minimum guaranteed pension ranging from Rs 1000 to Rs 5000 on attaining 60 years of age, 
    2. The amount of pension is guaranteed for lifetime to spouse on death of the subscriber and 
    3. In the event of death of both the subscriber and the spouse, the entire pension corpus is paid to the nominee.


Salient features of the scheme


Eligibility for APY:       


Focus of APY:


Enrolment and Subscriber Payment:       


Enrolment agencies 


Framework of APY:   


Funding of APY: 

  • Atal Pension Yojana (APY) is open to all bank account holders who are not members of any statutory social security scheme. 
  • Mainly targeted at unorganised sector workers.
  • All bank account holders under the eligible category may join APY with auto-debit facility to accounts, leading to reduction in contribution collection charges.
  • All Points of Presence (Service Providers) and Aggregators under Swavalamban Scheme would enrol subscribers through architecture of the National Pension System.  
  • It is a Government of India Scheme, which is administered by the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority. 
  • Government would provide 
    • fixed pension guarantee for the subscribers; 
    • would co-contribute 50% of the subscriber contribution or Rs. 1000 per annum, whichever is lower, to eligible subscribers; and 
    • would also reimburse the promotional and development activities including incentive to the contribution collection agencies to encourage people to join the APY.


Way ahead:

  • Going forward there is a humongous task of increasing the pension coverage as only five per cent of the eligible population has been covered under APY till date. 
  • Recognising the social importance of the scheme, continuous proactive initiatives for achieving exponential growth and addressing unexpected scenarios as and when they arise is the need of the hour.



  • Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) is the statutory Authority established by an enactment of the Parliament in 2003, to regulate, promote and ensure orderly growth of the National Pension System (NPS) and pension schemes to which this Act applies. 
  • It is authorized by the  Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance.
  • NPS was initially notified for central government employees recruits with effect from 1st Jan 2004 and subsequently adopted by almost all State Governments for its employees. 
  • NPS was extended to all Indian citizens (resident/non-resident/overseas) on a voluntary basis and to corporations for its employees.