Voicing concern over increasing default in loan repayment under the Pradhan Mantri Mudra scheme, the Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Tuesday demanded that the government rollback the scheme before rising non-performing assets (NPAs) stifle credit growth and bring ruin to the Micro-Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) sector.

The Mudra scheme was launched in 2015 for providing small loans to income generating small enterprises in manufacturing and services. Raising the issue during Zero Hour in the upper house of Parliament, TMC member Manish Gupta said, “Public sector banks have suffered hugely because of this scheme as collateral is not mandatory under the scheme. Over 2,300 cases of fraud have been detected and Mudra category loans have increased over last few years.”

Non-performing assets (NPAs) have been on a rise in public sector banks. The number of NPA accounts have increased from 17.99 lakh accounts in 2018 to 30.57 lakh accounts in just one year, he said.

The total value of non-performing assets by public sector banks is Rs 7.07 lakh crore. This figure has increased more than 100 percent, he added.

Gupta said the RBI has advised that rising NPAs under Mudra loans should be addressed aggressively. So far this fiscal year, Rs 1.41 lakh crore loan has been disbursed under Mudra Yojana.

“However, sources have claimed that bankers are pressured to grant Mudra loans to people who sometimes have no business plan,” Gupta said.

The average loan under the scheme is Rs 45,000, which many reports say is not enough to start a business and create jobs, he added.

Moreover, the data suggests, the Trinamool Congress member said only one out of five or 20 per cent of Mudra loans has resulted in job creation.

“Sir, this is yet another example of poor economics and poorer implementation. I would only urge the government to roll back the scheme before rising NPAs stifle credit growth and bring ruin upon the MSME sector,” Mr Gupta noted.