The controversy over the seizure of property for defaulting on a loan at Urban Cooperative Bank’s Pezhakkapally branch, Muvattupuzha, has taken a new turn, with the lender refusing largesse from the bank workers’ union to close the ready.
The seizure of VA Ajesh Kumar’s house had made headlines after Mathew Kuzhalnadan, the MP for Muvattupuzha, broke the lock on the house and let Mr Kumar’s children into the house. Mr. Kuzhalnadan had also announced that he would pay Mr. Ajesh Kumar’s bank dues and return the house to him.
As the loan controversy snowballed into a major political issue, the Kerala Cooperative Employees Union (CITU), which counted bank employees among its members, came forward to repay the loan. The union had reimbursed Monday morning the amount that was due to the bank.
Gopi Kottamurikkal, the state chairman of Kerala Bank, had praised bank employees in a post on social media.
As the case received unnecessary political coloring, bank employees showed up to repay the loan. The bank had followed all legal procedures in this matter. However, the lender had not responded to repeated communications from the bank and was unwilling to settle the loan, he said.
However, Mr Ajesh Kumar, who was recovering in a private hospital, rejected the largesse of bank employees and argued that he would take the backing of lawmakers, who backed him after the controversy broke out.
“I don’t need the support of bank employees because Mr. Kuzhalnadan offered to support me,” he said.
Mr Kuzhalnadan said the bank did not respond to his letter requesting details of the loan taken from the branch.
“I had informed the bank that I was ready to pay the dues and asked for the details of the loan. Although the bank had offered to give the lender a discount, I rejected the offer and argued that the full amount of the loan would be repaid,” he said.
For their part, bank officials said anyone can repay anyone else’s loan and that money paid into a loan account cannot be withdrawn at the request of the lender.
Ownership documents must be returned to the lender or property owner once the loan is granted, a bank official said.