Shortage of money should never come in the way of fulfilment of your basest desires. The RBI encourages you to do so. In the past, if you borrow from banks, there was a fear that some goons may come and harass you for repayment. They made it very difficult for you to miss EMI’s etc., Do not worry. All is now well, with the RBI having come to the rescue of people who love to live their life with OPM (Other People’s Money).
Well, the first part starts with getting money. Make sure that you approach as many banks as possible simultaneously. So long as you do not have a bad record as a past baggage, then no problems. Hit every bank for the maximum possible. Does not matter if the EMI’s total to more than you are ever likely to make in a month.
There is no way the banks know what you are going to borrow. If you have a job, it is fine. You can have a salary certificate. If not, go to the nearest printing press and get some done. Reference checks should be another breeze. Have a couple of prepaid mobile sim cards. Now with multiple sim cards in one phone, you can give one number as the referee’s so that when there is an attempt at verification, you can take care of it yourself. Verification is generally done by third parties, who are paid per completed verification, so play them along. It is rare that they will take a second or third attempt to complete the form. The third party will have targets from the lending bank, so they are very happy to complete the paperwork as soon as possible. They pay their employees ‘per case’ so the system works in your favour.
Having got the loan, now forget it. In order to make it easy, here are some tips:
i) Leave your house just around seven am and return just after seven pm. This way, your stay at home is peaceful. A recovery agent cannot come in to your house between seven pm and am;
ii) When there is a call for you, and it seems like it is the recovery agent, give them a bogus name. They cannot talk to anyone other than the borrower about the loan;
iii) If you are in a pooja, they cannot interrupt. This will come in handy;
iv) Even if the recovery agent calls you, you can put him off. He cannot call you more than once a day;
v) Per chance, if the agent finds you at home during ‘permitted hours’ organise an impromptu function or pooja. The agent cannot now bother you or enter your house. So, if he knocks, and you are foolishly caught unawares, tell him that there is a pooja going on and he can come next day after calling you;
vi) In case you have a vehicle pledged to them, do not worry. They have to give you a notice of repossession, give you time and then only they do it. Offer severe resistance physically whilst they come for repossession. They cannot retort since their code prohibits them from doing so. Alternately, keep some banned substance in the vehicle, which you can then pin on the agents;
vii) Even if they repossess your vehicle, they have to auction it to the highest bidder. You can always lodge a complaint with the consumer courts that they have not done their job diligently and that you could have got a higher price is a good plank to fight the lender. Who knows, you may get an out of court settlement offer;
viii) Inspite of all this, if the recovery agent manages to collar you, do not get intimidated. Tell him that you do not agree with the numbers given by him. Once this is settled, then till him that you will talk directly to the bank. If he still does not listen, tell him that you will lodge a complaint for harassment with RBI and the lending bank. It will be his word against yours and typically, courts will tend to support the ‘innocent’ and hapless borrower;
ix) Banks have been told to go to Lok Adalats for amounts up to Rs.10 lakh. Try and cross this limit. This will make sure that the matter goes to a court of law;
x) Once it goes to court, go to the bank and plead for a settlement. It is very likely that you may be able to settle for anything between thirty to fifty percent of your loan. You can keep this handy by placing a FD for around twenty percent of the loan you take, with a separate bank. This gives you the freedom to blow up eighty percent of the loan!
The Indian banking system is wonderful and is tailor made for defaults. So far, this privilege was available only to large borrowers (textile mills, steel mills etc) who could merrily default and thumb their nose at the banks. Now, there is a level playing field. Even if you are small, you can still default. If large borrowers and farmers can, so can you. Ditch Shakespeare (Neither a lender nor a borrower be…etc). Borrow and enjoy.
As regards the lenders.. God help them. The best way is to keep the legs crossed and not open the loan books to individuals for ‘personal’ loans, stock market loans, housing loans etc., In the US, even the distressed housing loans have become an issue, with the banks being virtually stalled from repossession!
(The central bankers and the media treat the borrowing scum with misplaced sympathy. This is the sole reason that crooks and criminals are able to siphon public money. If I had a choice, I would make sure that defaulters lose at least one limb and have a tattoo on their forehead. Defaulters are thieves who steal and should be shunned and boycotted by all decent human beings.)

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