Blame the rich, says finance minister Jaitley in Pune reckoning on NPAs
“It’s the rich people who are responsible for big NPAs. It is a challenge for banks to recover money from these rich people,” says the finance ministerUpdated: Sep 10, 2017 23:50 IST
Finance minister Arun Jaitley, on Sunday, blamed the “rich people” for high non-performing assets (NPAs) in banks in the country. Speaking at the golden jubilee celebrations of the Pune District Central Cooperative (PDCC) bank at the Agricultural College grounds in the city, Jaitley said small borrowers cannot be held responsible for major NPA accounts of banks.
“It’s the rich people who are responsible for big NPAs. It is a challenge for banks to recover money from these rich people,” said the finance minister.
Underlining steps taken by the central government to recover money under NPAs, Jaitley, while praising PDCC for having a zero NPA rate, said his government has taken some harsh steps, like treating defaulters as bankruptcy cases.
“These rich people had to go bankrupt. This was happening in the country for the first time,” the finance minister said, adding it is important for a bank to maintain its credibility.
According to Jaitley, banks giving loans to small borrowers have fewer NPAs. “Be it small industrialists or farmers, banks giving loans to small borrowers have fewer NPAs.”
Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar shared the dais with Jaitley during the function. The PDCC bank, according to Pawar, has zero NPAs despite offering loans to farmers at lower rates of interest.
Meanwhile, the bonhomie between senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley and NCP chief Sharad Pawar was once again on display on Sunday, with the former praising the latter. Jaitley, in his praise for Pawar said, “Whenever the discussion is about national security or issues of national interest, Pawar forgets he belong to a particular political party. I have been observing Pawar for many years and have never heard negative comments from him,” Jaitley said.
First Published: Sep 11, 2017 00:01 IST