The Public Sector Banks (PSBs) wrote off Rs 2.41 lakh crore worth of loans between April 2014 and September 2017, Minister of State for Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla disclosed on Monday.
In his reply to a Parliament question asked by West Bengal MP Ritabrata Banerjee, Shukla told Rajya Sabha that writing off non-performing assets (NPAs) was a regular exercise conducted by banks to clean up their balance sheet.
Reacting to the disclosure, West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee slammed the Centre for not considering farm loan waiver but writing off Non-Performing Assets of the Public Sector Banks.
“I am shocked to see that at a time when the farmers in the country are crying and committing suicide for their loan burden and asking for waiver of farmers’ loan, the Government of India have not even considered that,” Banerjee said in a Facebook post.
The minister, however, refused to disclose the details of borrower-wise credit information citing Reserve Bank of India’s confidentially rules.
“RBI has apprised that borrower wise credit information is not available for disclosure under section 45E of the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934,” the minister said.
The Bengal Chief Minister questioned government’s intention behind not disclosing the names of defaulters and alleged a “big scam”.
“Why is this confidentiality? Whom is the Government trying to protect? We demand immediate disclosure of the complete list of defaulters of public sector banks, whose loans have been written off. Is it not a big, big, big scam?” she said.