Bahrain group reports rise in issues related to loan sharks

Illegal money lenders often withhold victim's passports, ATM cards until debts are repaid
Bahrain group reports rise in issues related to loan sharks
The victims, who are mainly Indian expatriate workers, were paying up to 60 Bahraini dinars ($159) a month in interest repayments.
By Shane McGinley
Sun 21 Jul 2019 03:00 PM

A hotline set up in Bahrain, dedicated to helping those in financial distress, has seen a rise in complaints related to loan sharks, according to a report by the Gulf Daily News (GDN) website.

The Palisha Virudha Samithi (Committee Against Interest) group held a meeting in Bahrain on Saturday to discuss the growing problem of loan sharks in the last three months, with around 50 people in attendance.

The group runs a hotline dedicated to helping its members and reported that it was now receiving at least two calls a week related to the issue.

The victims, who are mainly Indian expatriate workers, were paying up to 60 Bahraini dinars ($159) a month in interest repayments, the report said.

The group said it had so far been forced to intervene in at least ten cases since November where victims were unable to repay the debts to illegal money lenders, who regularly withhold important documents, such as passports and ATM cards, as collateral until the debts are repaid.

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