A housing loan application submitted by a man in Zhengzhou, Henan province was recently rejected - a not altogether unusual occurence.
However, what sets this man's case apart is the reason his loan was denied: because Wu Jianping has no arms, creditors claimed they could not give him a loan since he was unable to be fingerprinted.
The 25-year-old Wu lost both his arms after receiving a severe electric shock at the age of 5. He manages to write his signature by holding a pen in his mouth. However, he was rejected by several banks when applying for a loan in Zhengzhou on Nov 14 because he could not provide fingerprints.
Bank employees argued that without fingerprint, a mere signature would not be legally binding.
"[Fingerprinting is a common practice because signatures can be imitated, but there is no way to copy a fingerprint," one employee was quoted as saying by local media.
The incident has triggered widespread criticism online, with many netizens pointing out that it is unreasonable to demand fingerprints given the circumstances. In response, several banks to which Wu applied reversed their previous decisions.
At the same time, Zhengzhou's housing management bureau – which also often requires fingerprints – stated that a special path for those with special needs is available to help people like Wu, Thepaper.cn reported.