Indian expats present case for interest-free banking

JEDDAH: A group of Indian expatriate workers met with the Minister of Overseas Indians’ Affairs, Vayalar Ravi, here recently and presented a memorandum seeking his support to introduce interest-free banking and financial services in India.

“Minister Ravi offered his support for and commitment to any Interest-free financing projects in India for expatriate Indians which comes under the purview of the Indian constitution,” said Abdul Aziz V.K. of Al-Hayat School who is also a member of the group. The group, which includes members of the overseas committee of International Seminar on Islamic Finance, invited the minister to inaugurate the seminar to be opened in Kochi on Oct. 4.

The three-day seminar is organized by the Islamic Research and Training Institute (IRTI), an affiliate of Jeddah-based Islamic Development Bank (IDB), and the Islamic University in Shantapuram, Kerala, and will be attended by experts from Saudi Arabia and other countries.

The minister was briefed on the importance of interest-free banking in a country like India to achieve greater financial inclusion, bringing in large sections of the excluded population into the formal financial system.

“The committee members discussed with the minister about how the Interest-free finance is now being viewed as a serious and viable alternative to modern capitalist systems bereaved of ethical principles and humanitarian considerations,” Aziz said.

The group included K. A. Abdul Rashid (Saudi Investment Bank), K. M. Mustafa (Amtech Computers) and O.P.R. Kutty (Financial Controller, A.A. Al-Turky Group) – Arabnews