Chandigarh – The Punjab government on Wednesday decided to convert bad loans into SC/BC debt relief scheme, which seems to be a smart game. The government has also decided to waive off Rs 52 crore loan of around 15,890 beneficiaries, who belong to Schedule Castes and Backward Classes.Interestingly, out of such beneficiaries, 90 per cent are those who either have expired or unable to repay the loan installments. While 10 per cent are those, who have been paying their installments. For such beneficiaries, govt would waive off Rs 50,000 for each. But the debt waiver scheme is for SC Corporation and BC Corporation, not for the debt ridden persons of commercial or private banks. Sources said that funds are allotted by the Central government and disbursed to SCs and BCs on the guarantee of the Punjab government and if the state government fails to repay the fund, than it may be difficult to get further funds.Both corporations provide direct lending loans for shops, general stores, repairs and to start the ventures such as carpentry. There are total outstanding of two Corporations toward debtors Rs 125 crore. Out of 14,260, only 82 debtors have been paying loan installments, while rest have been declared defaulters as NPAs. To settle NPAs, the government has converted it into debt waiver scheme. Talking to media persons, Sadhu Singh Dharmsot, Minister for SC/BC welfare, Punjab, said that Punjab Government would give a debt waiver of Rs 125 crore to poor people and the waiver would be initiated on April 14 (the birth anniversary of Bharat Ratna Dr BR Ambedkar) when Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh would distribute debt relief certificates to the tune of Rs. 20 crore during a state level function at Jalandhar, while rest 32 crore would be disbursed in a month.
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