Amid the controversy over public sector lender SBI reportedly writing off loans worth Rs. 7,000 crore, including that of Vijay Mallya-promoted Kingfisher Airlines, a sanitation worker in Nashik has written to the SBI, seeking a 'similar' waiver of his Rs. 1.5 lakh loan.
Bhaurao Sonawane, a safai worker with the Tryambakeshawar municipal council in Maharashtra's Nashik district, said he had written to the SBI, seeking waiver of his loan, "in the same manner in which the bank waived off Mallya's loan".
"I have written a letter to the bank, congratulating it for the 'good decision' to waive of Mallya's loan. I requested SBI to waive off my loan as well," Mr Sonawane said. "I took this loan to meet expenses on my son's illness," he said, adding that the bank manager is yet to respond to the letter.
Mr Sonawane's demand comes against the backdrop of Finance minister Arun Jaitley asking opposition members in the Rajya Sabha not to go by the literal meaning of write-off. "So there is a little bit of malapropism involved in this. Don't go by literal meaning write-off. Write-off does not mean loan waiver. Loan still remains. You still continue to pursue," Mr Jaitley had said, during a debate in the House on the government's demonetisation action.
Mr Jaitley was replying to CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury who referred to a newspaper report which said SBI wrote off loans of wilful defaulters including Rs. 1,200 crore of Kingfisher Airlines.