Communist Party of India’s (CPI) Andhra Pradesh state secretary K Narayana has demanded that state government file criminal cases against Microfinance Institutions which resorted to coercion and used inhuman methods to recover loans extended to poor villagers and tribal communities.
Talking to a section of the media, Mr Narayana also asked the state government to impose a ban on microfinance companies (MFCs) to prevent escalation of suicides in villages. If the government did not reign in these financial institutions, the Communist Party of India would intensify its agitation across the state, the CPI leader warned.
Political activists allege that two more people committed suicide on Monday unable to bear harassment from the agents of Microfinance Companies. One of them is an auto driver who committed suicide in Warangal district and in another case a woman ended her life in East Godavari district. Another woman who attempted suicide by consuming pesticides in Karimnagar district was battling for her life at a local hospital.
Meanwhile, the State Human Rights Commission (SHRC), taking suo motu cognizance of media reports on suicides, has issued notices last week to the district collectors to submit their reports by Oct 29.The Commission also directed the superintendents of police to take action in this regard.Andhra Pradesh is one of the states which has the highest penetration of Microfinance Companies in India.With more than 300 odd MFIs it constitutes about 40 per cent of microfinance sector in the country.
In July 2008, a group of Maoist Activists belonging to the CPI (Marxist-Leninist) Naxalbari had attacked the offices of NABARD in Kannur and Kalpetta in North Kerala to protest against the state sponsored micro finance program. The assailants had stormed into the office of the assistant general manager shouting slogans against NABARD and had vandalized the office.
Related News – Law to rein in micro-finance bodies’ bullying