In an apparent name and shame exercise, the Punjab National Bank issued an advertisement on Friday, declaring former minister in the Mehbooba Mufti government Imran Reza Ansari and his family members as "wilful defaulter" of loans to the tune of Rs 32 crore.
"In public interest, it is informed that having been declared as a wilful defaulter by the bank, the borrowers are not entitled to financial assistance from any other bank/financial institution," the advertisement published in a Jammu-based paper read.
It alleged that PDP MLA Ansari, his uncles - Amjad Abbas and Abid Hussain, and his first cousin Kumail Hussain have an outstanding balance of Rs 32.47 crore against them as on August 31, 2018.
The loans taken by the Ansari family, which runs Highland Automobiles in Srinagar, were declared non-performing assets on December 31, 2008 and the borrowers were declared wilful defaulters on March 19, 2014.
The notice further said that the public at large is informed that the Ansaris have availed loans from the bank and due to default on repayment, the accounts have been declared as non-performing assets.
"The bank has initiated recovery proceedings against them," the advertisement read.
The 46-year-old Ansari owns 40 per cent of the shares in Highland Automobiles and had made no mention of the money he owes to the bank in his affidavit submitted to Election Commission on November 17, 2014.
The affidavit of Ansari, who represents the Pattan assembly seat, mentions that a mortgage loan is pending against Highland Automobiles with the Punjab National Bank.
Ansari did not answer the phone calls made to elicit his reaction on the issue.