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Term plans saved my child’s future

Updated on April 2, 2016

For the most part, Arti Gopalan* speaks lovingly of her late husband, Mohan. But broach the subject of her husband’s passing and she becomes agitated. “He never took care of his health,” she rues. “He was always eating junk food in the office, always demanding chicken and fish every day. And he never exercised. His passing created a void that refuses to go away,” she says.

Mohan passed away at age 34 five years ago, after a massive heart attack in his sleep. “I rushed him to hospital the moment I realised that something was wrong, but he was gone. I don’t remember much after that – there was an endless stream of visitors, people kept asking me how I was, if I needed anything. I just needed to be left alone with our child and grieve,” she explains.

But her mother’s offer of financial help jolted her out of her reverie one morning. “Our daughter, Meghana, was out playing and I was sitting alone in the kitchen. My mother came in and started asking me about Meghana’s future, what I had planned about her school fees and further education. I didn’t have a job, so my parents were worried about how I would run the house and pay for my daughter’s school. At that point, I remembered something Mohan had told me.”

Heart racing, she opened Mohan’s safe and found what she was looking for, exactly where Mohan had told her to look ‘in case anything happened’. “He had bought a term plan online a few years ago, even before we had Meghana,” Arti explains. “At the time, he had explained that I should look up the policy document and get in touch with the insurance company to claim the term plan money. He paid something like Rs 5,000 per year as premium, and he would do it in minutes online from home – I thought it would amount to very little money. But at that time I was desperate – even a few thousand rupees would make a big difference to my life,” she says.

She filed the claim as per the insurer’s instructions, and a fortnight later, the sum assured came through. “I could not believe it – it was such a handsome amount of money! It would take care of Meghana’s school fees, uniform, books, any extracurricular activities…meanwhile, I contacted the company where I worked as a personal assistant before I had my daughter. They were willing to give me a job. Thus, I started working and the household expenses were taken care of.”

She says she thanks her late husband every morning for taking a term plan and ensuring a secure future for their beloved daughter. “Meghana meant everything to him. His one gesture ensured that our precious child would not be left wanting for anything. I was able to sustain her education and other expenses for a few years just with the insurance money. Now I have a well-paying job in another company so we are quite comfortable,” she explains.

But her daughter’s future security is still her number one priority. “I followed Mohan’s example and took a term plan online two years ago. Now even in my absence, my child’s dreams can be fulfilled without any obstacles,” she smiles.

*Characters in this article are fictional and used for illustrative purposes


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