Letters

Letters to the editor dated December 8, 2021

Updated on: Dec 08, 2021

Senior citizens hit

As is well known, Indian Railways has recently restores train services to the pre-Covid levels. It has also restarted ‘on-board’ food facilities to the passengers travelling by Shatabdi, Rajdhani and Duranto trains etc, to begin with. However, it was intriguing to learn that the govt is now unwilling to “restore” the basic fare concessions that were available to various eligible categories of train passengers like the Senior Citizens, women (aged 58 years and above), and Differently abled persons, among others, prior to the “invasion” of pandemic.

The Union Railway Minister informed the Rajya Sabha, that the government did not find it “feasible” to restore the same now even as the aforesaid commuters constitute only 12 per cent of the total train passengers, which is a pity. One really wonders whether the government also plans to withdraw the “free train/air travel” facilities currently available to Members of Parliament on the same plea?

Vinayak G

New Delhi

Protect PMC Bank depositors

Apropos the editorial 'Depositors bailed-in' (December 8), the draft proposal bailing out the PMC bank and its merger with Unity Small Finance Bank do contain many points severely impacting the retail depositors of PMC.

Imponderable provisions such as staggering repayments stretching on for 10 years or more to the retail depositors of more than ₹5 lakh; no payment of interest on these deposits which are due in the next five years; for institutional depositors, it is still worse as they have to forego their dues almost completely, with 80 per cent to be converted into Perpetual Non Cumulative Preference shares bearing one per cent dividend and the remaining in equity warrants.

Apparently, there appears to be some mismatch on the acquirer’s capital base compared to the total deposit base of PMC which it proposes to take over. The new entity Unity SFB’s capital base is ₹1,100 crore whereas, PMC’s deposit base is over ₹10,000 crore. The RBI needs to step in and ensure that retail depositors’ hard earned money is well protected and not put into any hardship.

RV Baskaran

Chennai

This refers to the editorial “Depositors bailed in” (December 7).

Let us not forget that many banks (both from the cooperative and private sectors) have been compulsorily merged with other banks during the last 50 years or so. But in the scheme of mergers, banks’ depositors are invariably inconvenienced and suffer. As a depositor I wish to know how irregularities and frauds in banks can be detected well in advance.

If one studies the performance of failed cooperative and private banks, both old and new, can one say that all their directors/top managers were capable, honest and professionally sincere? Another question which we need to ask is: how do we deal with frauds? Our investigation agencies like Enforcement Directorate (ED) are always late in collecting and collating information. It takes years to file legal cases for alleged frauds and then it is a long wait till those guilty are actually punished. It is time we review and revamp our systems of fraud prevention and investigation and prosecution for financial frauds.

Narendra M Apte

Pune

This refers to the article ‘Grey areas in GST law’ (December 8). Tax laws must be clear and easy to understand for tax payers. As far as GST is concerned it is a country-wide law and launched to overcome the difficulties in 17 indirect tax laws subsumed in it to stabilise the concept of “one land one tax”.

It is unfortunate that GST tax officials interpret such laws by focussing only on GST collection and without understanding the nitty-gritty of the law.

NR Nagarajan

Sivakasi

Published on December 08, 2021

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