Chief Secretary rebukes ''silent'' bank officials

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Aizawl, Feb 12 (UNI) Mizoram Chief secretary Haukhum Hauzel today expressed serious concern over the alleged silence of the banks and other financial institutions on the availability of collateral free loans.

''While the Reserve Bank of India and the Union Micro and Small Industries Ministry have guaranteed loans up to Rs five lakh without security deposit, the banks and some financial institutions in the state have long been silent on this,'' the chief secretary said.

Addressing different bank officials at the NABARD's state credit seminar, presided over by NABARD general manager J C Mishra, held here today, Mr Hauzel lamented on the reluctance of the banks in releasing the Centre and Small Industries Development Bank of India's (SIDBI) special offer to the Northeastern states, which was a collateral free credit system, even after seven years of its initiation in August 2000.

He hoped that the seminar will spread awareness among the people and banks and emphasised the need to render mutual help for development.

The chief secretary also released a book - the State Focus Paper, 2008-09, Mizoram - at the seminar.

The paper, compiled by the NABARD, contained information on the potential of Mizoram, keeping in view the infrastructure and other support services available and the gap that needs to be bridged to effectively exploit the identified potential using credit as a source of finance in the development planning process to users in an era of public private partnership model in the long run, a NABARD official said.

It covers state profile, banking profile, credit and non-credit initiatives and policy measures, besides statistical information.

The document also spells out the issues and suggestions requiring attention of the state government, bankers and other stakeholders, he said.

As per NABARD estimates, the credit absorption capacity of the state under various components of priority sector has been pegged at Rs 247.37 crore.

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