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I had a public provident fund (PPF) account before I became a non-resident Indian (NRI). The 15-year term of the account is ending in a year’s time. 

I may not be able to come to India in the next two years and so it will be difficult for me to close the account. 

Since new rules now prohibit extension of the PPF account for NRIs, would my account be frozen? Also, will the amount that has accumulated in the PPF account be eligible for earning any interest? 

                                   — Jayesh Shah

 

Since you are an NRI, you may not be able to extend the term of your PPF account. In such a case, your PPF account shall mature and PPF account may be transferred to your existing bank account or an NRO account. You may make an application to the bank to this effect. The account shall not earn any interest after the date of its maturity. Interest on PPF account is exempt from tax in India. 

 I was born in India in 1983 and purchased some agricultural land in the country in 2003. Later in 2005, I moved to the UK for higher education and eventually acquired British citizenship and thus I am now an overseas citizen of India (OCI). 

What are the rules pertaining to ownership of agricultural land for OCI cardholders? Can I still own the land that I purchased in 2003 ?

— Name withheld on request

 

An NRI or OCI is not allowed to purchase agricultural land in India. However, this does not apply to NRIs or OCI holders who either acquired such agricultural land in India before attaining the status of NRI or OCI, or have inherited such agricultural land by following due process. 

However, an NRI is not allowed to sell agricultural land to another NRI.

Archit Gupta is founder and chief executive officer, Clear.in.

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