Ever since loan defaulter Vijay Mallya turned fugitive, banks have resorted to recovering the amount from common people. After levying charges on routine transactions, banks are now planning to propose entry charges for customers who visit the bank premises.
The Indian government, which is working out an extradition policy with the United Kingdom to bring back Vijay Mallya since three years, has discovered a quicker method to recover Mallya’s debt amounting to Rs 10,000 crore. The State Bank of India (SBI), which lent money to the liquor baron, has already collected a hefty amount from account holders as fine for not maintaining minimum balance in the bank account.
Calling it a masterstroke of PM Modi to up the nation’s economy, part-time BJP spokesperson and full-time Republic TV anchor Sambit Patra said, “Firstly, we opened people’s bank accounts free of cost, without any criteria of minimum balance. As soon as people started putting in their money, we adopted minimum balance schemes and charged them penalty for non-maintenance of minimum balance. By doing so, we successfully managed to empty their bank accounts once again. This was the child-brain of Urjit Patel and Arun Jaitley… Erm, I mean brainchild.”
While a few banks have already started extorting money from customers for transactions such as cash deposit and withdrawal, passbook printing, issue of new cheque book, entering a bank, the SBI has gone one step further by proposing a penalty on breathing within the radius of 500 metres around the branch.
The SBI has also started penalising its employees for entering the branch premises every day for work. “We are leaving no stone unturned to ensure that our bank earns the maximum amongst all the banks trying to recover Mallya’s debt,” said a Board member of the SBI.
Economists have also speculated that the banks’ move to extort money from the common man is undertaken to compensate for the failure of the demonetisation drive.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who agreed to face our interview despite knowing that we are not ace journalist Arnab Goswami, clarified that the demonetisation drive did not fail. He said, “What failure is the Opposition talking about? Look at the overnight turnover of Jay Amit Shah’s company; it’s called development. If you still think that my governance is all talks and no substance, you have clearly not seen the work of the Ahmedabad-Mumbai bullet train project, which was announced before Gujarat Assembly Elections.”
We visited the proposed site for the bullet train project to monitor the situation, and as told by the prime minister, we really could not see any work of the project. The prime minister, thus, ensured us that he does not lie.