In 2009, a complete list of bank defaulters was published and shown on electronic media. A report of the same was also submitted in the Supreme Court (SC), so that all those businessmen, political leaders, retired army men and journalists who were among over 3,300 people who got Rs 153.5 billion loans written off from 11 financial institutions between 1999 and 2007 could be bought to book. However, it is disappointing to note that this matter of great national interest was never pursued in earnest and the defaulters were set free to enjoy.

The SC has just ordered NAB in the containers case to either recover the amount incurred on the case from the accused and in the event of failure bear the mark-up on it. It would be fully justified if the honourable SC also passes a similar order against the above bank loan defaulters and the financial institutions involved in the scam. NAB or the concerned financial institutions should be penalised by making them pay the mark-up on the huge amount of Rs 153.5 billion if they fail to recover the same in grace time awarded by the SC. Unless quick action is taken, it is feared that the nation will lose this amount forever.

MAZHAR BUTT,

Karachi, September 1.