52 people dead, Rs 500 cr siphoned off by Chinese loan apps but Modi govt asleep: Congress

Congress spokesperson Gourav Vallabh said 600 Chinese-origin digital application offering loans to people were still functional in India even after the issue was flagged by the RBI

Indian National Congress flag
Indian National Congress flag
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NH Political Bureau

The Congress on Tuesday accused the Modi government of turning a blind eye to the menace of Chinese-origin digital applications offering loans to people, which, it said, had siphoned off Rs 500 crore from India even as 52 people had died after getting caught in the debt trap created by them.

Addressing a press conference in the national Capital, party spokesperson Gourav Vallabh said even after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had flagged the issue, 600 Chinese loan apps were still functional in India.

“Chinese loan app companies have siphoned off Rs 500 crore from India through the hawala route. There has been no strategy, no focus by the Modi government in evaluating priorities. Certain Chinese apps were banned in 2020 but the action on such apps has been lackluster,” Vallabh said.

“They (Modi government) are providing our citizen’s data on a platter to China,” he added.

Accusing the BJP-led Central government of lying to the nation, Vallabh said that for the last two years, such loan apps had duped lakhs of Indians and created a debt trap for them, leading to 52 individuals dying by suicide.

He held the Modi government directly responsible for these deaths.

Referring to the RBI report on the issue, Vallabh said that between January and February 2021, about 1100 Chinese loan apps were available in India for download and installation.

RBI too had accepted that at least 600 such apps were operating illegally and Rs 500 crore were sent to China through illegal routes, he said. The Modi government and various agencies did not, however, take any action, he added.

It is pertinent to mention that as per the data provided by the RBI,

there was a jump of 12 times in loans on digital platforms from 2017 to 2020.

Noting that Chinese apps had mushroomed during the Covid lockdown and people preferred to take loans through these apps, the Congress spokesperson said, “People were forced to resort to such debt propositions because they were financially weakened by the government”.

“When ED and other agencies pay visits to Opposition leaders, why was the government sleeping when at least Rs. 500 crores were siphoned off from India by these Chinese loan apps? Several lives have been lost due to the harassment by these money lending apps, and RBI is clueless. What is the Modi government waiting for to act on such apps?” Vallabh said.

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