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1-min read

PM Modi’s 59-minute Loan Scheme a Scam, Govt Manipulating Data, Claims Bengal Finance Minister

The 59-minute loan sanction scheme for small and medium businesses was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in November last year.

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Updated:February 1, 2019, 10:00 PM IST
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PM Modi’s 59-minute Loan Scheme a Scam, Govt Manipulating Data, Claims Bengal Finance Minister
West Bengal finance minister Amit Mitra. (File photo)
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Kolkata West Bengal finance minister Amit Mitra on Friday called the 59-minute loan sanction scheme for small and medium businesses, which was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in November, as “one of the biggest scams of the central government”.

Mitra alleged that the “mess” that has resulted from an “under-prepared GST implementation” has resulted in a “boom in hawala transactions” since businesses are claiming input tax credit and there is no way to match those claims with invoices.

Speaking at the West Bengal state Assembly, Mitra said, “You need to find out more about this Gujarat-based company Capita World, which is handling the loan in 59 minutes portal for small industries. This company was non-existent till 2015. In 2016, this company posted a loss of Rs 38,000. And this was the company which was selected to take all your data.”

“This company would have access to your GST identification number, IT returns, bank statements of six months and all your personal details,” Mitra warned, adding: “When the government realised that it is moving towards a scam, it forced a consortium of public sector banks to take majority stake in the firm and give it a public character.”

“We have been saying for a long time that GST would result in hawala-induced black money. And today that’s exactly what is happening,” he said. “Some of my economist friends are saying that if a growth of 8.1 per cent is possible in the year of demonetisation, then we should demonetise every six months,” the minister added on a sarcastic note.

Mitra also accused the Narendra Modi government of being involved in “data manipulation”, saying, “The chairman of the Statistical Commission resigned because the report on unemployment was not being published. Now the cat is out of the bag. Newspapers have published that unemployment has increased by 6.1 per cent, the highest in 45 years.”

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