UCO Bank decides to distribute Diwali sweets to top 10 wilful defaulters, withdraws notice later

Public sector lender UCO Bank on Wednesday announced its decision to distribute sweets to the top 10 Non-Performing Assets (NPA) borrowers in the bank on the occasion of Diwali this year. However, the order was withdrawn the following day, 2 November.

In an official statement on November 1, the Head Office of the Recovery Department said, “The Top Management has recommended that a sweet packet be distributed to the top 10 NPA Borrowers in each Branch, in line with peer PSBs, like any valued customers another, in the case of the Branch. The leaders must meet them personally, greet them on the occasion of Diwali and distribute sweet packets to them.”

“The Zonal Heads are also advised to personally meet and greet the Top 10 Borrowers in the NPA Zones on the auspicious occasion of Diwali,” he said.

UCO Bank also said that the Branch officials faced many challenges in recovering dues from these borrowers. “It was not an easy task.”

“Time and again it has been observed that there is a general deterioration of Banker’s customer relationship when the account turns into NPA. Not all NPA borrowers appear to be a willful defaulter and do not pay the dues despite having sufficient repayment capacity,” the order read.

He added, “There may be certain compelling situations like failure/loss of business, death of key business people, unavoidable circumstances, etc. which cause the PA account to turn into NPA as well. On the contrary, in some cases , it has also been observed that only the ego clash between the customer and the Bank officials is the cause of the account turning into NPA.”

“Such activity could also create empathy and harmony that will compel some of the borrowers to come forward to settle their account with the Bank,” the bank said.

On November 2, the bank issued its latest circular in which it said, “It is hereby advised that the instructions contained in the above communication stand be withdrawn.”

UCO Bank is set to reveal its Q2FY24 financial results today, 3 November.

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Updated: 03 November 2023, 07:37 AM IST

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