Several complications have arisen over a promise given through the government’s Interim Budget presented in January to waive off the interest on gold jewellery pawned to banks – through a circular issued by the Ministry of Finance.
However, a circular issued by the Finance Ministry on March 10 points out that only pawned gold that has been transferred to the “non-performing category” on or before January 31, 2015, will be eligible for the relief package.
As a result, only customers who pawned their gold jewellery on or before October 30, 2013, will reap the benefits of this interest waiver.
The normal procedure at banks is to auction pawned jewellery that has exceeded one year, and has not been claimed.
When News 1st made inquiries from certain state banks, they responded that gold jewellery pawned before October 30, 2013, had already been auctioned.
JVP North Central Provincial Councilor Wasantha Samarasinghe noted that the government has been involved ‘in a total lie’ and according to the circular the government has not waived off the complete interest fee. If the interest rate was at 20 %, and now the interest rate is at 12.5%, according to this release, only 12.5% will be reduced. The remaining 8% will be taxed from the people.