PSBs recovered Rs2,03,000-cr of NPAs since April '18: Sitharaman
12 February 2020
Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman has claimed that the country’s debt-laden public sector banks have recovered a record Rs2,03,000 crore of bad loans over the last one-and-a-half years, while12 of the 18 state-run banks reported profit.
NPAs of public sector banks stood at Rs7,27,000 crore at the end of the first half of the fiscal year 2019-20, down from Rs8,96,000 crore at the end of March 2019, according to government figures.
The recovery has been made possible on the back of a host of measures taken by the government to improve financial health of the banks in the country, the finance minister said on Monday.
"The government has instituted comprehensive reforms in PSBs to improve, governance, underwriting, monitoring and recovery, and has leveraged technology in all aspects of banking, resulting in reduction in their NPAs," she stated.
"Record recovery of Rs2,03,000 crore over the one-and-half year period ending September 2019, 12 out of 18 PSBs reporting profit in the first half of the current financial year, and the highest provision coverage ratio in seven-and-half years," she further added.
Minister of state for finance Anurag Thakur had earlier said in Lok Sabha that scheduled commercial banks and select financial institutions have reported frauds to the tune of Rs1,13,374 crore as of 30 September 2019.
Thakur said during Question Hour that as a result of transparent recognition of stressed assets as NPAs, gross NPAs of PSBs, as per RBI data on global operations, rose from Rs2,79,016 crore as of 31 March 2015, to Rs6,84,732 crore as of 31 March 2017 and Rs8,95,601 crore as of 31 March 2018.
The minister said systematic and comprehensive checking, including of legacy stock of NPAs of PSBs, for frauds under the framework has been taken note of by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in its Financial Stability Report of December 2019, where it has observed that this has helped unearth frauds perpetrated over a number of years.
This is reflected in the increased amount involved in frauds of Rs1 lakh and above, reported by scheduled commercial banks and select financial institutions, from Rs23,934 crore in the financial year (FY) 2016-17 to Rs41,167 crore in FY2017-18, Rs71,543 crore in FY2018-19, and Rs1,13,374 crore in the first half of the current financial year, he said.