Thrissur: The union government is gearing up to take criminal action against people who chose not to pay bank loans despite having the financial means to do so.
A law is being created to take action including arrests against such people by bringing them under the category of willful defaulters. Ministry of Finance has held discussions with Reserve Bank of India in this regard.
During the last financial year, the number of non-payers of loan were 8,552 while it was 5,349 the previous year. Willful non-payment of loans amounted to Rs 1,50,000 crore last financial year alone.
At present, there are no ways to take stringent action against willful loan defaulters. The only option is to publicise their names and attach their assets after legal battle. On identifying irregularities in loans, criminal action was taken against bank officials.
Bankers committee came forward with the demand to take criminal action against willful defaulters after the number of loan defaulters increased and more bank officials started facing legal action. National Council for Bank Employees also sent a letter to the centre in this regard.
Intentional non-payment after taking loans to the tune of Rs 25 lakh is considered as willful defaulting.