March 2016 News

J&K Bank Money Spent To Please Netas: Kashmir Divisional Commissioner

10 March 2016
The Economic Times
Hakeem Irfan

Srinagar: Kashmir's divisional commissioner Asgar Samoon has alleged that the J&K Bank, in which government has 53.17% stake, distributed loans to 'blueeyed boys' of politicians despite knowing that they would never be returned and the accounts would become non-performing assets. Samoon claimed that the J&K Bank, considered to be the state's premier financial institution, lacked vision for investment and representatives from the business community and young entrepreneurs should be part of its policymaking body. The senior-most bureaucrat from the Kashmir Valley alleged that bank spends corporate social responsibility money 'to make politicians happy.' 'We will write to J&K bank and can call them for discussion as well,' said Samoon while launching an e-commerce portal that sells GI certified pashmina and fashion wear. As per the annual report of J&K Bank, gross NPAs have risen from around Rs 783 crore in 2014 to Rs 2,764 crore in 2015. In same financial year, 2014-15, out of Rs 29.87 crore for CSR, only 13.75 crore was spent. 'Here subsidies are given to blue-eyed people and then they are rescued by declaring the account as NPA. J&K bank does this.' According to Samoon, J&K Bank should have been able to create incubation centres for budding entrepreneurs to inspire and instill confidence among the next generation of businessmen. 'But J&K Bank is lagging behind.' He lashed out at the government saying, there was a lot of 'deadwood' in government departments, which has not been removed for some years now.