“Banks have written off ₹11.17 lakh crore bad loans from their books in the last six years till financial year 2021-22,” Parliament was informed on December 20.
The non-performing assets (NPAs), including those in respect of which full provisioning has been made on completion of four years, are removed from the balance sheet of the bank concerned by way of write-off, Minister of State for Finance Bhagwat Karad said in a written reply.
Banks write off NPAs as part of their regular exercise to clean up their balance sheet, avail tax benefit and optimize capital, he said, adding, the write-off is carried out by the banks in accordance with Reserve Bank of India (RBI) guidelines and policies approved by their boards.
“As per RBI data, public sector banks (PSBs) and scheduled commercial banks (SCBs) wrote off an aggregate amount of ₹8,16,421 crore and ₹11,17,883 crore respectively during the last six financial years,” he said.
“With regard to the list, including names of write-offs/defaulters who have defaulted more than ₹1 crore to the public sector banks, RBI has informed that borrower-wise information on written off loan accounts is not maintained by it,” he said.
In a reply to another question, Mr. Karad said, the RBI has informed that the total number of willful defaulters each having outstanding loan of ₹25 lakh and above in public sector banks was 8,045 as on June 30, 2017 and 12,439 as on June 30, 2022; whereas in private sector banks, it was 1,616 as on June 30, 2017 and 2,447 as on June 30, 2022.
He further said, “RBI has informed that as on 30.6.2017, there were 8,744 suit-filed wilful defaulters and 917 non-suit-filed wilful defaulters in public and private sector banks, and as on 30.6.2022, the same stands at 14,485 and 401 respectively.” The list of suit-filed wilful defaulters of ₹25 lakh and above is available in the public domain on the websites of the Credit Information Companies (CICs) and that of non-suit filed wilful defaulters is confidential in nature and are not in public domain .
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has informed that 515 fraud cases, including cases related to willful defaulters, have been recorded since May 1, 2017 under the provisions of Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002.
As on December 15, 2022, he said, in these cases, assets worth ₹44,992 crore (approx.) have been attached and 39 prosecution complaints have been filed by the Directorate.
“Further, as on December 15, 2022, assets worth ₹19,312.20 crore of wilful defaulters such as Vijay Mallya, Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi have been attached since May 2017 by the ED under PMLA, 2002, out of which, assets worth ₹15,113 crore have been restituted to the public sector banks,” he said.
“Banks themselves write off NPAs as part of their regular exercise to clean up their balance sheet, avail tax benefits and optimize capital, in accordance with RBI guidelines and policies approved by their boards,” he said.
Replying to another question, Mr. Karad said Scheduled Commercial Banks have recovered an aggregate amount of ₹6,59,596 crore, including the recovery of ₹1,32,036 crore from written-off loan accounts during the last five financial years as per the RBI data.
In a reply to another question, he said, the total amount of recapitalization by the government in banks during last five financial years is ₹2,90,600 crore, including recapitalization of ₹4,557 crore in IDBI Bank Limited, which has been categorized as private sector bank by RBI on January 21, 2019.
In the financial year 2021-22 and first half of the financial year 2022-23, he said, PSBs have reported aggregate net profit of ₹66,543 crore and ₹40,992 crore respectively.