Interviewers – Khushhboo Agrahari with Satish Shenoy
Mr PAMARTY VENKATARAMANA is an eminent Jurist, Author, Poet and Life-Member of the Supreme Court of India Bar.
His pivotal role as a Policy-Adviser is well applauded and has engineered multi-sector foreign direct technical collaborations.
He has been associated with UK based Rivlin International for World Bank Hospital projects.
He has been involved with the Indo British Partnership Initiative, Japanese, MENA region and Global Organization of PIOs, India Link International, U. K., etc.
A giant-slayer in International Arbitration matters. PAMARTY VENKATARAMANA, Chief – PVR LAWS, based in New Delhi, has been rated one of the top-notch Global Attorneys in matters of Corporate and Criminal Jurisprudence.
A stellar role of his has been in forging solutions to the Rubiyat, Mecca and other matters involving the last Nizam of Hyderabad and Republic of India with foreign powers like Saudi Arabia, UK, Pakistan, for an amicable resolution of long-standing contentious issues.
He is a recipient of prestigious Awards from World Bodies.
His writings on carving a #NewIndia have generated wide debate on breaking the Gordion Knot of economic woes being faced by the Indian society.
His book detailing such remedies -‘ X-raying the Mahatma’, is under publication.
In a candid Interview with Corporate Review, the Icon of the next crop of Lawyers, PAMARTY VENKATARAMANA makes game-changing suggestions to re-engineer the Indian Economy and help raise the quality of #GoodGovernance in India.
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Covid19 has been witnessing great consternation among customers of all Banks. How can the fears be allayed?
PVR – A major phenomenon has been the sad trend of hacking of customers’ accounts, despite a robust security system in force.
Next, a very strict protocol of such a Vigilance-system should be put in place for all the personnel of
every Bank (every individual can have access to his working manifesto, and they shall be made to undergo a Human-Audit every six months.
This is crucial because a majority of the instances of such ghastly Bank-Frauds are taking place purely with the connivance of the Employees and Directors of Banks.
The next measure would be a two-fold initiative.
Since India is an avowed Digital Society, let it be made mandatory to transact any transaction over and above say, rupees five lakhs, only via digital modes.
That would help eliminate a lot of wasteful paperwork, costs as well as help in checking the
pursuits of a parallel economy.
The other aspect of this new evolved strategy would be to ensure that only phone and computer – literate Customers of the Banks will be given the Digital Banking- facility.
The remaining customers would be confined to the Manual-Banking system until they gain the required knowledge and become tech-savvy.
The trend and practice of merger of non-performing Banks have resulted in more confusion than peace. What is your view?
PVR – Besides these measures, it becomes equally important to help motivate and instil a sense of importance among the employees of the Banks.
In this direction, the employees of Nationalized Banks may be set ‘business targets, each year so that they can be involved in the development process of the Bank and the salary can be streamlined based on the profit-oriented process.
Also, the lending-norms should be strictly regulated and any bypassing of such stringent norms must be dealt with by automatic orders of immediate suspension from service and Special Fast-track Courts established, to deal with such criminal charges, within a given period of nine months.
As happens with Court-martial trials, in the Army, for purpose of strictest discipline.
Are any other practical ground reforms needed?
PVR – On another dimension of Banking reforms, service across the desk should be warm and people-friendly, disseminating information and educating the general public about effective implementation of various Government Schemes, in the public interest.
But most important is the need to stop the unhealthy practice of mingling State sops and subsidies with regular commercial banking activities.
The Social banking function may be diverted and confined to the National Post-Office Banking system.
On the ground level of the re-engineering banking ecosystem, all loss-making branches and unremunerative branches must be merged.
Yet another vital change required to be carried out is that no bank ought to have a branch within a distance of one thousand meters of any other branch.
How would you suggest we address the malaise of bad-loans?
PVR- Yes. First and foremost, when the early symptoms of the sickness are noticed, the Promoters must be called up and an elaborate, serious discussion be held giving the option to either rectify the
causative factors of the ‘Sickness’ or else, to work towards a disposal /transfer of the Unit as a ‘Running concern’.
In this regard, Banks should become co-owners of every Unit that receives the Project-Loan facility rather than remaining as mere Lenders and act as undertakers of units, gone sick.
Secondly, if there is any diversion of the ‘Working Capital’ amounts granted, such an Account should be frozen immediately and steps are initiated, immediately, under the SARFEASI ACT.
Any other radically practical changes you would suggest for transforming the Banking sector of our Country?
PVR – One, let the idea of Banking-function be re-fashioned: banks may receive deposits, interest-
free. Let borrowers pay interest to the Banks.
Two, Government may raise the limit of guaranteeing deposits placed to a sum of rupees one crore.
The present limit of guarantee is neither people- friendly nor fair.
Three, Indian Banks must be allowed to accept deposits in foreign currency such as the US Dollar,
and offer says a per cent more of interest.
Politicians who spoke of bringing back black monies stashed abroad into India’s system may have
been unable to do so but by implementing this new policy, India would grow stronger by the inflow of deposits by Foreigners in stronger currencies.
You are known to have argued for speedy confiscation of all such distressed assets. Bad loans and confiscation of assets are related subjects of course. What is your view on this?
PVR – As pointed above, the syndrome of ‘Sickness’ should be dealt with, at an early stage and distressed assets must be disposed of, instantaneously, either by way of sale or by liquidating immediately – without waiting for completing the rigmarole of ‘due process of law’ for such legal remedies available to the Banks.
As importantly, immediate action must be taken to ascertain the ‘Personal Assets’ of the Owners/Promoters, and to attach these immediately, without orchestrated ‘stay orders’.
Accountability and Liability ought to go hand in hand, in such a war against corrupt practices.
Existing procedural Law can be tweaked to arrive at this new deterrent system. In the national
Corporate Review – Thank you, PVR, for sharing most valuable insights, never heard of, before.