Silver Star Owner Refutes JKB Charges

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Srinagar, Nov 08: The management of Silver Star hotel on the city outskirts has joined issued with the Jammu and Kashmir bank on the alleged attack on the latter’s recovery team on Tuesday.

In a statement on Thursday, the Silver Star owner, Mir Manzoor Gazanfar, vehemently refuted the charges that he had waved a pistol at the bank’s recovery team. Terming the press report about it as “fabricated and baseless,” he accused the bank of attempting to harass him and his family with a view to destroying their business.

The hotel owner said that on November 6 at 9.30 in the morning, when he was having a bath at his home, a 25-30 strong team of the bank appeared in the premises. They were told to come to the office where he would be reaching in half an hour.

But, Gazanfar alleged, using highly abusive language, the bank team tried to harass him and his family members. The recovery official, retired DSP Nazir Ahmad Gani, and some other members of the team “behaved very rudely,” he alleged, adding that they kicked the entrance door and even smashed some window panes of the house.

Gazanfar said he was a borrower like others and started his hotel construction in 2005 for which the bank had sanctioned “a very nominal amount.” However, at the instance of the bank to enhance and upgrade the hotel, he had submitted a revised project report for a 5-floor building instead of 3-floor with 10 feet enhancement from ground level at double the original cost.

“But the bank officials deceived and ditched me that I had no other option but to dispose off my various businesses and hereditary assets in respect of land to complete the half-done hotel project,” Gazanfar alleged, adding the project was completed in 2007.

He said he had taken a loan of around Rs 5.50 crore out of which Rs 3.60 crore had been repaid up to 2010. Among the few loans sanctioned, he said, the bank had randomly levied an interest of 17 per cent against 12 per cent on one account against which he made several representations. He said the unrest from 2008 to 2010, when the tourist arrivals had trickled down sharply, he had suffered heavy loss of business.

However, he said, lack of response from the bank prompted him to approach the court where the proceedings were stopped by the High Court since 2010, he said, alleging that in defiance of court orders, the bank officials were pressurizing and harassing him even by going to his residential house.

Gazanfar urged the business community and the government to take note of the bank’s alleged arrogance, acts of harassing business houses and tarnishing their image. Observer News Service

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