Borrowers say EMIs debited from loans despite opting for 3-month moratorium

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Banks are charging equivalent monthly installments (EMIs) for home loans, business loans and car loans, even to customers who had been granted a three-month moratorium on all such payments, a reprieve announced by the US Finance Ministry. ‘Union in view of the Covid -19 pandemic and the 21-day nationwide lockdown imposed to prevent its spread.

Many borrowers such as apartment buyers, businessmen and auto owners in Noida and Greater Noida have written to the Ministry of Finance pointing out the banks’ non-compliance but no action has been taken. so far.

On March 27, the Ministry of Finance had proposed to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) a moratorium on all loan repayments, and the interest thereon, for three months. Consumers have been informed by their respective banks that they have the option of requesting the moratorium or continuing to pay. The moratorium was suggested given the economic hardship suffered by many due to the complete lockdown of offices and businesses.

“My private sector bank allowed me to apply for a three month moratorium on my home and car loans and acknowledged it via text message. But even then the EMI was debited for the month of April from my account “Government must act against these banks to make sure they follow government guidelines. We tried to contact the bank but got no help,” said Pushpendra Singh, a resident of Area 135 and employee. of a private company.

“I had four commercial loans from four different private banks. I requested the moratorium because I have virtually no savings in my account at the moment. I received a message from the four banks indicating that my request for a moratorium has been approved. But now the four banks have taken installments from my accounts. If the lockdown continues beyond the 21 days, I won’t even have money to buy essentials like milk and vegetables,” said Shekhar Mahajan, a resident of the Sector 16 exotic housing company. , Greater Noida West. Mahajan said he recently started a business specializing in spare parts for air conditioners and it is now closed due to the lockdown.

“If the customer has requested a moratorium and the bank has agreed to it, the EMI should not be deducted. But in cases where it has been debited, customers are advised to visit the respective branches to find out how it happened. It may be a technical problem. They can file a complaint in writing with the bank and also bring it to our attention. We will look into this matter,” said Ved Ratan, Senior Manager of the bank, Gautam Budh Nagar.

Many said that banks also charge interest on the postponement of EMIs.

“As all business activities are closed and income suddenly stopped, banks should not charge interest during the moratorium period. this period,” said Indrish Gupta, founding member of Noida Extension Flat Owners Welfare Association.

When contacted, a finance ministry official said the RBI would look into such cases.

“The RBI manages private sector banks and looks into these issues. We have made it clear to all the banks that they should not force people to repay their loans during the moratorium period if they decide to take advantage of the stay. Public sector banks will only accept loan repayments if a consumer decides to pay voluntarily,” said Debashish Panda, finance secretary in the Department of Financial Services.


  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Vinod Rajput writes on environment, infrastructure, real estate and government policies in Noida and Greater Noida. He has reported on environment and infrastructure in Delhi, Gurgaon and Panchkula in the past.
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