The Opposition Congress on Thursday ridiculed Finance Minister Arun Jaitley’s claim that no bank loan of big capitalist defaulters were ever waived off during the past three years of NDA rule. Armed with figures, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi said loans worth Rs 1,88,287 crore of willful defaulters were waived since 2014. “We all know that top 50 corporates owe Rs 8.35 lakh crore to the banks and of these Rs 3 lakh crore are from three top Gujarat-based companies — Reliance (Anil Ambani group), Adani and Essar. Only early this month, one of them (Reliance) publicly declared shutting their telecom business with a liability of Rs 45,000 crore due to the banks,” he said. He said far from declaring it as an NPA, the government is trying to help the defaulter with further defence contracts like the Rafale deal.When reminded that most of the NPAs were legacies of the previous Congress-led UPA government, he asked what is preventing the current government to declare this liability of Rs 45,000 crore as NPA? He further said that it makes no sense to give these companies an offset contract worth Rs 30,000 crore in the Rafale deal.Singhvi ridiculed the government for the farm loan waiver of just one paisa to farmers of Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra while waiving Rs 1.88 lakh crore of bank loans of its rogue crony friends. He wondered if the government is really trying to help the nationalised banks recover from collapse under the NPA burden. “The so-called Rs 2.11 lakh crore amount for bank recapitalisation announced by the finance minister on October 24 has neither a roadmap or a time frame. We are waiting for the finance minister to spell that out,” Singhvi added.Meanwhile, another spokesperson and party’s in-charge of media cell, Randeep Singh Surjewala alleged that four private electricity companies in Gujarat were profiteering at the cost of state exchequer. Describing it a ‘huge scam in power purchase’, Surjewala said despite 8,641 MW production capacity with Gujarat government-owned power plants, they have been operating at an abysmally low level of 33% to 38% of their capacities over last three years to benefit four private power companies – Adani, ESSAR, Tata and China Light Power — from whom expensive power is purchased. He said during last three years alone (2013-14 to 2015-16), BJP government purchased electricity worth Rs.26,195 crore from the four private power companies and at the same time kept production of government-owned power plants low.Reliance replyA Reliance spokesperson said Singhvi has made false, defamatory and libellous statements against the group. “We will be filing a Rs 5,000 crore suit for damages for making these statements,” he said.
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Yogi Adityanath

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Congress ridicules Arun Jaitley on NPAs