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'New loan scheme of Sub.Development Bank will save rural folk from Shylocks'

Aranayaka special correspondent The move adopted by the Minister of Rural Economic Affairs Bandula Gunawardena to take the Development Banks under the wings of the Ministry of Rural Economic Affairs has paved the way for a unique loan scheme to be implemented through Development Banks to save the poor rural folk from Shylocks who deal out on the spot quick loans at Rs. 20% per month.

The poor rural men and women when in desperate need for money, fall prey to these Shylocks, and ultimately end up paying through their noses, falling from frying pan to the fire. The new loan scheme of the Sabaragamuwa Development Bank will provide loans up to Rs. 25,000 or less, as the need may be, to finance small scale industries or traders involved in day to day buying and selling businesses in locally available agricultural produce, said the Chairman of the Sabaragamwua Development Bank Terence Wickramasingha.

He was speaking at a function held by the Aranayaka Branch of the Sabaragamuwa Development Bank to mark the inaugural granting of loans to five selected accountholders at the rate of Rs. 25,000 each.

The Chairman said that the Minister was fully aware of the plight of the poor, that fall into the clutches of money lenders, and has validated his sincere vision to redress their plight by creating this unique loan scheme, that charges a very nominal interest of 9.5% per annum.

Much of the red tape has been done away with in comparison to loans granted by Commercial Banks. Loan settlement procedure is spaced in easy instalments to suit customer convenience, the Chairman said.

Manager, Kegalle District Development Bank I.D. Premathilaka, Aranayaka Divisional Secretary U. Jayarathna and many others spoke.

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