Defaulters and default loans disclosed
Finance minister has revealed a list of 300 top loan defaulters of the country in the national parliament. The defaulters' collective loan amounts to a staggering of Tk 50,942 crore. In addition, this list has uncovered that 14,617 individuals and institutions took loans of Tk 1,741,348 crore in total since 2009. Among this lent money Tk 100,183 crore has become defaulted. The Finance minister disclosed the matter in response to a query of a ruling party parliament member on the day before yesterday.
Statistics shows that default loans at banks went up by 26.38 per cent or Tk 19,608 crore in 2018. Unfortunately, this year it's likely to increase significantly, according to the indicators. The overall scenario delineates the vulnerable condition of the banking sector of the country.
There are enough reasons to hold banks responsible for not picking good borrowers for the growing amount of defaulted loans. However, in January the Central Bank took initiatives to redefine default loan and bad loan, which offers leniency to the defaulters.
The Finance minister's controversial statement in this year's April, justifying bad loans borrowed by many businessmen clearly presents impunity to loan defaulters. Of course he did not favour the offenders but attempted to protect honest businessmen and entrepreneurs those who are in dire straits. But scammers take the advantage in time.
Usually the small businessmen are unintentional defaulters. Actual scammers borrow huge amounts with dubious purposes with the intention not to repay it. They deliberately divert funds from their businesses to use it for either laundering the money abroad or to use it for other reasons. The defaulters often keep themselves unclassified by filing writ petition in High Court Division and also take fresh loan from other banks. In most cases, these wilful defaulters are politically well connected. But whoever these habitual defaulters, especially the top listed 300, should not be exonerated and be brought to book. They should be handed out with exemplary punishment to ensure the financial stability as well as recovery of bad loans.
It's a matter of hope that the finance minister has promised to the nation that he would take stern measures against loan defaulters while decreasing their number to the minimal.
Let's wait to see what lies ahead.