ISLAMABAD - The Islamabad High Court (IHC) Wednesday issued notices to the principal secretary of prime minister and president National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) in a petition seeking formation of some special laws so that the youth loan scheme could be made easier, particularly for the female applicants.
In this regard, Chief Justice IHC Muhammad Anwar Khan Kasi also directed both the respondents to submit their reply within a fortnight.
The court issued these directions in a petition moved by Zahida Sami through her counsel Ahmad Nawaz Bhatti and made Prime Minister Secretariat through its principal secretary, secretary cabinet division, chairperson prime minister youth business loans, president National Bank of Pakistan and president First Woman Bank as respondents.
The petitioner told the court that the scheme contained various aims and objectives enabling the people to get employment and boost up the level of self-reliance. “The aims and objectives are very much attractive and it is appreciated that the respondents were pleased to introduce such high aimed objectives in the public interest but unfortunately, the policymakers and the introducers of the instant scheme failed to touch difficulties at the grassroots level as the major portion of the population is illiterate and poor,” contended the petitioner.
Her counsel informed the court that every application was supposed to be supported with Rs 100 as processing fee, which was non-refundable. “The petitioner has gathered information that till date 2,700,000 applications have been received. It has also come into knowledge of the petitioner that after cutting off these applications, the respondent number 4 has entertained 5,000 applications while the respondent number 5 has entertained only 50 applications,” the counsel added.
He continued that the amount of processing fee was worked out to the tune of Rs 270 million, meaning thereby that this scenario made profitable for the respondents 4 and 5 and the general masses stood looser for getting reward from the scheme.
He further told that 50 per cent ratio of the facility was allocated to the female gender but the conditionality of the guarantor for availing of loan was not formulated for the females while the females were not in a position to present the guarantee to the respondents as per condition imposed in the application form.
“This deviation is alarming and the person who enjoys to be declared guarantor victimises the female applicants and they are compelled even to immoral/ unethical act,” maintained the petitioner. Therefore, she prayed the court that the petition might be allowed with the directions to the respondents that the unwarranted condition of guarantee be waived off for being female as the applicant was unable to produce the surety at par with the male applicant and this concession could be made favourable in consideration of the other laws belonging to female gender.
The petitioner further prayed that respondents be directed to frame special laws so that the scheme could be made easier for the achievement of the high aimed objectives in the best interest of justice.