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If I need money, can I make withdrawals in addition to taking out a loan against my PPF account?

No, withdrawals and loans are exclusive of each other as per the rules of operating a PPF account. Loan facilities are extended to account holders only between the 3rd and 6th year of operating an active account, whereas partial withdrawals are allowed from the 7th year. This means, you cannot avail of a loan from the 7th year nor can you make withdrawals before the 6th year.

This scheme was devised to promote savings and while loans and withdrawals are allowed to a certain extent for some liquidity, the scheme in general, does not aim to encourage a reduction in savings potential.