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Property worth Rs 2.3 lakh crore seized to recover NPAs


NEW DELHI: Over 1.7 lakh properties — with a market value of Rs 2.3 lakh crore — have been taken over or confiscated during the last three financial years under laws dealing with recovery of non-performing assets of public sector banks, the government told Parliament on Monday.

Between 2016-17 and 2018-19, the properties related to 1.45 lakh NPA accounts have been taken over through Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest (SARFAESI) Act, Debts Recovery Tribunals and National Company Law Tribunal, among others, junior finance minister Anurag Thakur said in reply to a question in the Lok Sabha.

There are another 64,400 properties related to NPA accounts which haven’t been taken over due to a variety of factors, including the nature or quantum of loan or the nature of security or the judicial process, the minister added.

In recent years, banks have seen a spike in bad debt, which was estimated at Rs 9.4 lakh crore at the end of March, as the RBI forced lenders to recognise NPAs in their books, while the slowdown accentuated the problem.

Several borrowers repaid dues as IBC was invoked

The government and the regulator have responded through a series of steps, including the enactment of the IBC and strengthening SARFAESI to aid the recovery of bad debt. The record pile of NPAs had pushed several public sector banks into losses, forcing a massive recapitalisation of banks.

In recent months, there are signs of an improvement with recovery of loans picking up. During the last four financial years, over Rs 3.35 lakh crore of NPAs, including close to Rs 1.3 lakh crore in 2018-19.

IBC was responsible for nearly Rs 70,000 crore of loan recovery during the last financial year, a report by ratings agency Crisil had estimated. In addition, several borrowers have repaid their dues to banks, as well as other creditors such as vendors, as the IBC was invoked, prompting them to settle the matter before the case was admitted in the National Company Law Tribunal.

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