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PSBs asked to get passport details for loans of Rs 500 mn and above: Govt

In cases, where the concerned person does not have passport, a certificate in the form of declaration that he does not possess passport should suffice in lieu of passport details

Illustration by Binay Sinha

Illustration by Binay Sinha

Press Trust of India New Delhi
The government has asked all public sector banks (PSBs) to obtain a certified copy of the passport of the promoters or directors and other authorised signatories of companies seeking loans of Rs 500 million and above, Parliament was informed on Wednesday.
"With a view to enable banks to inform relevant authorities of passport details, if need arises, vide letter dated March 6, 2018, the government has advised all public sector banks to obtain a certified copy of the passport of the promoters/directors and other authorised signatories of companies availing of loan facilities of Rs 500 million and above," Minister of State for Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla said in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha.
The minister said the government has also advised PSBs that in existing cases where loans are of Rs 500 million and above, banks may collect the passport details of the relevant authorised people.
In cases, where the concerned person does not have passport, a certificate in the form of declaration that he does not possess passport should suffice in lieu of passport details, he said.
The above measure assumes significance for cases where big and wilful defaulters of bank loans flee the country smelling action against them to repay their dues.
The recent revelation of fraud amounting over Rs 130 billion  at second largest public sector Punjab National Bank (PNB) is the trigger for the government to issue such an advisory to banks as Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi -- the key persons to defraud the bank--fled the country before investigations were launched against them.
In a separate question on recapitalisation of banks, Shukla said the government has infused capital of Rs 518.5 million till the first half of the current financial year.
In October 2017, the government announced recapitalisation of PSBs to the tune of Rs 2.11 trillion over the current and next financial year of which Rs 1.53 trillion will come via government recapitalisation and the balance through capital raising by banks themselves from markets.
"As follow-up, the government has made budget provisions of Rs 881.39 million for the second half of 2017-18 and Rs 650 billion for 2018-19, and Rs 775.6 billion has been infused as capital in the second half of 2017-18 (till 23.3.2018) from the said budget provision for 2017-18," the minister said.

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First Published: Mar 28 2018 | 11:23 PM IST

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