PMC Bank small depositors can now withdraw up to Rs. 1 lakh: Nirmala

PMC Bank account holders protest outside RBI office at BKC.

PMC Bank account holders protest outside RBI office at BKC.  


Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman cites “hardship allowance” clause

Small depositors of the Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative (PMC) Bank would be given priority to withdraw their deposits and nearly 78% of them fell under this category, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman informed the Lok Sabha on Monday.

The current ceiling on withdrawal was ₹50,000 and the depositors could withdraw up to ₹1 lakh, she said, citing the “hardship allowance” clause.

While admitting that the issue was a sensitive one, she said, “Hardship allowance can be invoked to meet emergencies like medical treatment or household expenses like wedding in the family, education. Depositors are allowed to withdraw up to to ₹1 lakh.”

The Finance Ministry, the Reserve Bank of India and the Enforcement Directorate were working together to auction the attached properties of the promoters of the bank and use the money to pay back the depositors, Ms Sitharaman said.

The Minister was responding to a supplementary question from Biju Janata Dal (BJD) member Pinaki Misra. He said people were ruined after losing their entire savings in the bank. “I would like to know what special effort your ministry is doing so that people don't have to commit suicide?”

In reply to a separate question on bringing petroleum products under the Goods and Services Tax (GST), Ms Sitharaman recalled the efforts of her predecessor, the late Arun Jaitley, who brought it under GST but kept it zero rate of interest as there was no consensus among the States.

“Technically, the provision is there. It's only a question of fixing the rate,” she said and added that only the GST Council could decide on it.

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Printable version | Dec 6, 2019 7:07:12 AM |

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