A whopping Rs 70,000 crore is lying with various banks, insurance companies, and mutual funds as unclaimed amounts by the depositors/legal heirs/nominees.
In the case of banks, the unclaimed amount is over Rs 48,200 crore at the end of FY22, according to a Reserve Bank of India (RBI) report.
The unclaimed deposits in the banks - deposits-SB/CA/fixed, not claimed for 10 years, was over Rs 48,200 crore last year, up from about Rs 39,200 crore in 2021 and about Rs 24,000 crore in 2020, as per the report.
If one takes into account the amount lying unclaimed with the insurance companies, the mutual funds and other unclaimed securities, the cumulative amount, will be far larger.
For instance, in the case of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), the unclaimed amount is about over Rs 21,000 crore.
The banks happily use this almost free float for their business purposes for 10 years, after which, it is transferred to the Depositor Education and Awareness Fund (DEAF) maintained by the RBI.
According to the RBI, the legal heirs/nominees can locate the unclaimed amounts on the bank's website, feed in some simple data, and claim the remaining amount.