PM indicates interest rate cut…

AGRA: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said his government’s demonetisation drive will push banks to cut lending rates significantly, triggering a revival in economic activity in the country. “Over Rs 5 lakh crore deposited with banks (so far after the decision to scrap old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes) are not going to be kept idle. Banks will have to extend loans for all sorts of economic enterprise…for which they will have to bring down their interest rates,” Modi said at a BJP rally in Agra, resuming his campaign for UP assembly polls next year.

The PM pitched the currency ban drive as particularly good for the poor and the middle class, reiterating that the inconveniences being faced by ordinary citizens are temporary. “Madhyam varg ka shoshan band hoga aur gareebon ko uska haq milega (It will put an end to the exploitation of middle class and provide benefits to the poor),” Modi said a couple of times during his public meeting to assuage the hardship faced by people in depositing old notes into their accounts as well as in withdrawing money from banks and ATMs.

Asserting that this demonetisation move will put an end to situations where people were forced to convert their hard-earned money to black money, he cited the practice of cash donations to schools and cash share of house purchases by honest taxpayers as examples. “People were forced to convert white money into black money…. This disease is on its way out,” the prime minister said to drive home the benefits for the middle class.

He, however, cautioned poor Jan Dhan account holders against renting their bank accounts to black money holders. “Laws are strict, poor should beware…Keep your hands off others’ Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes…Don’t get caught into their trap for some cut they are willing to take,” the prime minister said.

Modi said, “I want to assure that your sacrifices will not go waste…. Desh sone ki tarah tap kar bahar niklega (country will emerge shining like gold from the furnace).”

Credits ET Realty

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