The High Court slams Bangladesh Bank for its recent stance supporting big defaulters. The high court is fearing that another 100,000 crore BDT may be laundered from the country if the big loan defaulters are given further opportunity to get bank loans in line with Bangladesh Bank’s May 16 circular. High court also said that country’s banking sector is no longer business-friendly, rather banks have become organisations of usurers. The observations came in a hearing on a writ petition on that issue.
The HC halted the loan defaulters’ privilege to secure further loans by rescheduling their defaulted loans upon a down payment of just 2 percent of the total loan amount and ‘one time exit’ till 23rd June. The HC bench of Justice FRM Nazmul Ahasan and Justice KM Kamrul Kader passed the order following a petition filed by Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh (HRPB) seeking a stay on the BB circular.
Referring to the BB notice, the HC said, the central bank on the one hand is patronising the big loan defaulters by giving them various facilities, on the other hand, it is harassing small loan defaulters by filing cases related to loans and bank cheques. Raising the question on the independent entity of Bangladesh Bank, high court also slammed why that entity works for in favour of the loan defaulters and asked question why BB is yet to implement the prime minister’s instruction to bring down the lending rate for bank loans to a single digit.
At the end of last year, the total defaulted loans in the banking sector stood at Tk 93,370 crore, up by 25.66 percent year-on-year, according to the BB.
On May 16, the same HC bench ordered the BB to submit by June 23 a list of names and addresses of borrowers, who defaulted on loans of over Tk 1 crore each. It also asked the BB governor to submit to it a report by the same date with details on the money laundered to different countries and the steps taken to recover it.