Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala government today made it clear that it would go ahead with ‘Operation Kubera’, the drive against private money lenders, till it roots out the menace.
Replying to a submission on the matter, Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala said it was a matter of concern that debtors were even now committing suicide due to threats from money lenders even after the launch of the operation in May.
The government’s objective was to root out illegal money lenders who charge exorbitant rates of interest and exploit the poor, he said.
The Minister pointed out that the High Court had also given go ahead to the government to continue the operation.
On the demand of T N Prathapan (Cong), who moved the motion, that Non-Banking Financial Institutions violating RBI guidelines also be brought under the operation, Chennithala said government had not shown any discrimination on this.
“Several big private money lending business houses have been raided on the basis of complaints,” he said.
He said police have been instructed to ensure that inspections and raids are conducted only after proper verification and that the operation should be transparent.
“All genuine complaints will be looked into’, he said.
Chennithala said a toll-free number and helpline would be opened soon as part of the operation.