Postal Life Insurance, the oldest life insurer in the country, is setting up a full-fledged investment division for generating optimal returns, according to the Department of Posts.

This move is aimed at ensuring compliance with the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority’s (IRDA’s) regulations that do not allow insurance company to outsource the investment function.

The Postal Life Insurance (PLI) and Rural Postal Life Insurance (RPLI) corpus is now managed by SBI Funds Management Private Ltd and UTI Asset Management Company, said a Department of Posts statement.

The assets managed under PLI and RPLI for the year ended 2011-12 are Rs 23,010.56 crore and Rs 9,141.44 crore, respectively.

Launched in 1884

The funds are deployed as prescribed by IRDA, among others, in Central and State government securities, housing, infrastructure, corporate bonds and equity.

Postal Life Insurance was introduced in 1884 as a welfare scheme for postal employees and then extended to staff of the telegraph department in 1888.

Postal Life Insurance has grown from a few hundred policies in 1884 to 50.07 lakh as on March 31, 2012.

Postal Life Insurance covers employees of Central and State governments, Central and State public sector undertakings, universities, government-aided educational institutions, nationalised banks, and local bodies. It also extends cover to officers and staff of Defence services and paramilitary forces.

Rural Postal Life Insurance was introduced in 1993, with the prime objective of spreading awareness as well as provide insurance cover to the rural population, especially those in the weaker sections and to women workers.

As on March 31, 2012, there were over 135.47 lakh such policies.

(This article was published on November 2, 2012)
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