With an aim of reviving the ailing industry in the border districts of Punjab, industry minister Anil Joshi, on Friday, announced a one-time settlement scheme for industrial loans through the Punjab Financial Corporation.
Addressing mediapersons here, Joshi said, "Ever since I assumed charge as industry minister, my aim has been to revive the industry in the state and create a conducive environment for investors."
"Border districts have suffered a lot due to various reasons, including terrorism. So with an aim of reviving the industry in the border areas of the state, we have decided to launch a one-time settlement scheme for government-aided industrial units."
The minister said the Punjab Financial Corporation had given hefty loans in the past to many industrialists for setting up units, but over the years the loans have not been returned. "Now the PFC has announced that in small loan cases up to Rs. 1 lakh, the corporation will now be recovering only the outstanding principal amount, minus the payment, if any, made after April 2003.
For pending loans up to Rs. 5 lakh, the recoverable amount would not be more than double the loan disbursed. However, in other cases, the PFC will now charge only 6% simple interest since beginning," he said.
The minister said the scheme was valid up to March 27, 2013, and the beneficiaries were to deposit 25% of the settlement amount, along with their applications. The balance 75% is to be deposited within 90 days from the date of settlement without interest or in three quarterly instalments with 12.5% interest per annum from the date of settlement.
Joshi said that under this one-time settlement scheme, a total of 409 units situated in border districts were likely to benefit. The total amount outstanding in these cases is about Rs. 625 crore, against which the OTS amount would tentatively work out to be Rs. 59 crore. The PFC will forego a sum of Rs. 566 crore.
For units in other districts, the applications will be received up to March 31, along with 25% of the settlement amount. In such districts, the settlement of loans of more than Rs. 5 lakh will be done with 12% interest rate.
The minister said that this was an effort to give relief to sick units and revive them.