CHENNAI: The racket usually begins with a message saying, ‘You have been chosen as a lucky customer to avail free insurance for an education loanof 2 lakh.’ Many unsuspecting loan seekers who took the bait have found that they were not so lucky after all.
With educational institutionsthrowing open applications for the coming academic season, banking experts are warning people to be wary of such messages or calls. In Tamil Nadu, the highest number of complaints received by the banking ombudsman pertained to education loans during 2015-16, as per an official statement.
Anbarasu, a service engineer employed in a home appliances firm in the city, said he received a random call during which an agency offered loans starting from 1 lakh per year. “I paid 50,000 in two instalments as premium and got a receipt. I was told I would receive documents regarding the insurance but they did not send anything. It was only after a few months that I realised they had absconded with the money,” he said.
Anbarasu approached the agency’s head office but still couldn’t get his money back. He then decided to file a complaint with the banking ombudsman in Teynampet and finally got his cash back after a year and a half. Stories like these are not uncommon. Out of 1,382 complaints received by the ombudsman under the ‘loans and advances’ category during 2015-16, 1082 (78%) related to education loans in the state.