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'Make up' remarks misinterpreted: Vatti

Thu 28th Oct 2010 11:07 AM
'Make up' remarks misinterpreted: Vatti
'Make up' remarks misinterpreted: Vatti

Rural Development Minister Vatti Vasanth Kumar on Thursday accused the Telugu Desam Party Mahila activists of misinterpreting his statement on microfinance institutions.

Talking to media persons at the Secretariat, Mr Vasantha Kumar said “I have not made any comments hurting the sentiments of women. I only told them to utilize the loans taken from MFIs properly. But the TDP members have given a political colour to the statement and tried to gain mileage after wrongly interpreting my statements.”

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“TDP president N Chandrababu Naidu, who himself promoted liberally MFIs in the state during his tenure, now agitating against them. There is no point in launching agitation and termed it would not serve any purpose,” he pointed out.

“As a responsible Minister, I will not issue such irresponsible statements hurting the women members,” Mr Vasantha Kumar clarified.

The Ministers’ statement assumes importance in the wake of Telugu Desam Mahila activists on Wednesday baying for his blood during a dharna at Basheer Bagh crossroads, demanding that the Minister withdrawal his comments and apologise to the women of the state for stating women falling into debt trap by buying cosmetics.

Mr Vasantha Kumar also accepted the challenge thrown by the TDP for an open debate on the MFIs issue. The Minister told Mr Naidu to fix the date and time for the debate.

Recalling Naidu statement that he had heard the word "microfinance" for the first time, the Minister read out the text from Naidu's autobiography ‘Manasulo Maata’ presented in the World Micro Credit Conference in Washington in 1997.

He also flayed Naidu for calling loanees not to repay the loans until the State government makes its stand clear on the MFIs.

The Minister said the Ordinance was made only to prevent abuse and arm-twisting measures of MFIs in the recovery process and to put an end to taking loans without knowing the ability to repay them.