Retired govt doctor in Ariyalur claims nationalised bank refused to give loan as he didn't know Hindi
Hurt by the treatment allegedly meted out to him at the Gangaikondacholapuram branch of a nationalised bank, 76-year-old C Balasubramanian served a legal notice to the bank’s manager.
ARIYALUR: Can a bank loan be refused simply because the applicant does not know Hindi? That is the allegation put forward by a retired government doctor in Ariyalur district.
Hurt by the treatment allegedly meted out to him at the Gangaikondacholapuram branch of a nationalised bank, 76-year-old C Balasubramanian served a legal notice to the bank’s manager through an advocate.
Balasubramanian alleged that the manager refused him a loan after he told him he does not know Hindi. He is seeking Rs 1 lakh as compensation for the mental stress he has undergone.
The notice, sent via registered post and received at the bank, stated that denial of loan for not knowing Hindi could be termed as deficiency in service. The notice said that if the compensation is not paid, the Ariyalur district consumer court would be moved. A copy of the notice has been sent to the chief grievance redressal officer of the bank.
Balasubramanian, lives in Jayankondam in Ariyalur district, having retired from the Jayakondam Government Hospital in 2001. He has had an account at the Gangaikondacholapuram branch of the nationalised bank since 2002.
Ten days ago he went to the bank branch seeking a loan to build a commercial complex on a piece of land he owned.
Balasubramanian said he met with bank manager Vishal Kamble. The doctor said that Kamble asked if he knew Hindi as the manager was from Maharashtra and did not understand what Balasubramian was saying.
According to Balasubramanian, he replied that he only knew Tamil and English. This allegedly resulted in a heated argument over the language in which the duo should converse. The doctor claims that the manager denied him the loan due to the language issue, without even considering his application.
"The manager also told me that my land documents were in Tamil, and he could not check them. I was very hurt by this treatment. I am a senior citizen and a 15-year account holder, I don’t deserve to be treated this way; being denied a loan without even checking my bank documents,” he lamented.
Local residents said that this was not an isolated incident. According to locals, Kamble rarely interacted with customers and it was the assistant bank manager who handled most of the customers there.
When The New Indian Express reached out to Kamble for his version of events, he said, “my higher-ups have asked me not to talk to the media about this.”
“Had he said that the bank could not give a loan for some other reason, I could have reached out to other banks. However, effectively saying that loans will be given only to customers who know Hindi is not right. Does that mean that the bank will not give loan to anyone who doesn’t know Hindi?" Balasubramanian asked.