Bank Write-Offs Between April-September 2019 Amounts to Rs 80,893 Crore, Says MoS Finance Anurag Thakur in Parliament
A SBI branch. (Photo Credit: PTI)

New Delhi, December 3: Union Minister of State for Finance Anurag Thakur on Tuesday informed the Parliament that both the state-run and private lenders have written off bad loans worth Rs 80,893 crore during April-September 2019 period. This latest update arrives at a time when Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had stated that public sector banks (PSBs) had disbursed as much as Rs 2.39 lakh crore credit in November to non-bank lenders, large and small businesses -- including MSMEs -- to increase the access of funds.

Answering to the questions in the Parliament during the Winter Session, Thakur informed in a written statement, as quoted by CNBC TV18, "As per RBI data on global operations, public sector and private sector banks wrote off Rs 80,893 crore (provisional data), during the current financial year 2019-20 (till September 30, 2019)." Public Sector Banks Disbursed Rs 2.39 Lakh Crore Credit in November, MSMEs, Farmers Benefited Through 'Loan Melas': Nirmala Sitharaman.

Among the key banks which wrote off bad loans or non-performing assets include State Bank of India (Rs 27,535.31 crore), which is followed by Bank of Baroda (Rs 5,439.76 crore) and Axis Bank (Rs 5,426.14 crore) respectively. However, the MoS Finance stated that NPAs of public and private sector banks rose to Rs 10,21,464 crore as on March 2018 from Rs 3,12,706 crore as on March 2015.

The Union Minister also informed the parliament that teh measures taken by the government -- under its 4R’s strategy of recognition, resolution, recapitalisation and reforms -- have resulted in the decline of gross NPAs by Rs 80,790 crore to Rs 9,40,674 crore as on September 2019 (provisional data).

Asked about the beneficiaries of the loans written off, the minister said, "As borrowers of written-off loans continue to be liable for repayment and the process of recovery of dues from the borrower in written-off loan accounts continues, write-off does not benefit the borrower." Apart from this, Thakur stated that PSBs have written off loans worth Rs 1.86 lakh crore in FY19 as per RBI data on domestic operations. Adding on, the statement says that Rs 12,556 crore was written off in loans pertaining to 'agriculture and allied activities'.