As per Reserve Bank of India (RBI)’s data on global operations, aggregate gross advances of Scheduled Commercial Banks (SCBs) increased from Rs. 25,03,431 crore as on 31.3.2008 to Rs. 68,75,748 crore as on 31.3.2014. As per RBI inputs, the primary reasons for the spurt in stressed assets have been observed to be, inter-alia, aggressive lending practices, wilful default/loan frauds/corruption in some cases, and economic slowdown. Asset Quality Review (AQR) initiated in 2015 for clean and fully provisioned bank balance-sheets revealed high incidence of Non-Performing Assets (NPAs). As a result of AQR and subsequent transparent recognition by banks, stressed accounts were reclassified as NPAs and expected losses on stressed loans, not provided for earlier under flexibility given to restructured loans, were provided for. Further, all such schemes for restructuring stressed loans were withdrawn. Primarily as a result of transparent recognition of stressed assets as NPAs, gross NPAs of SCBs, as per RBI data on global operations, rose from Rs. 3,23,464 crore as on 31.3.2015, to Rs. 10,36,187 crore as on 31.3.2018, and as a result of Government’s 4R’s strategy of recognition, resolution, recapitalisation and reforms, have since declined by Rs. 1,02,562 crore to Rs. 9,33,625 crore as on 31.3.2019 (provisional data reported by RBI on 2.7.2019).
With regard to the number of loans transformed into NPA after 2014, RBI has informed that it does not collect data on NPAs based on the original date of sanction of loans and as such, it does not have information with reference to any particular date of disbursal.
Government has implemented a comprehensive 4R’s strategy, consisting of recognition of NPAs transparently, resolution and recovery of value from stressed accounts, recapitalising of Public Sector Banks (PSBs), and reforms in PSBs and the wider financial ecosystem for a responsible and clean system. Comprehensive steps have been taken under the 4R’s strategy to reduce NPAs of PSBs, including, inter-alia, the following:
Enabled by the above steps, as per RBI data on global operations, the NPAs of SCBs, after reaching a peak of Rs. 10,36,187 crore as on 31.3.2018, have declined by Rs. 1,02,562 crore to Rs. 9,33,625 crore as on 31.3.2019 (provisional data for the financial year ending March 2019), and SCBs have effected record recovery of Rs. 4,01,424 crore over the last four financial years, including record recovery of Rs. 1,56,746 crore during 2018-19 (provisional data).
This was stated by Shri Anurag Singh Thakur, Minister of State for Finance & Corporate Affairs in a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha today.