New Delhi: Launching a stinging attack on the earlier UPA government for non-performing assets (NPAs) in banks, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said his government was being wrongly targeted for what he called the “sins” of the Congress.
Replying to the motion of thanks on the President’s address in Lok Sabha, PM Modi said that the 36 per cent NPA cited by the Congress-led UPA government in 2014 was wrong and the actual figure was 82 per cent.
“In March 2008, the total advance given by banks was Rs. 18 lakh crore. See what happened in six years. In March 2014, this became Rs. 52 lakh crore. This was the money of India’s poor. You kept restructuring it on paper. And the amount that is increasing now is the interest of the money that you gave and not the money we have given. The amount increasing is the interest on the Rs. 52 lakh crore,” said PM Modi, claiming that not a single bank loan given after his government came to power has turned non-performing.
The prime minister claimed that he could have revealed the facts earlier but that would not have been in the ‘interest of the country’. “Earlier, calls used to be made for facilitating loans (to people who were close to those in power). Crores of money was given (through loans). Had I kept the facts before the nation earlier, it would have hurt the economy.”
The prime minister said his government has taken a host of steps like recapitalisation of banks to revive the stressed banking sector.
He also took on the Opposition for what he called “spreading lies” about NPAs, adding that “the people will not forgive you for your sins”. “The more you throw mud, the more will the lotus (BJP’s election symbol) bloom.”