Public sector banks’ gross bad debt jumped over 51 per cent to a whopping Rs 1,03,891 crore in 2011, the Minister of State for Finance Mr Namo Narain Meena said today.

Replying to supplementaries during the Question Hour in the Rajya Sabha, he said the gross Non-Performing Assets (NPAs) of public sector banks has increased from Rs 68,597.09 crore at December 2010 end, to Rs 103,891.27 crore as on December 2011.

“NPA increase is marginal... not usual,” he said. “Banks have been instructed to see how NPAs can be reduced.”

Mr Meena said some of the loans to sectors like power, steel, MSME and aviation have gone bad or declared NPA.

Aviation sector, he said, had an outstanding of Rs 39,000 crore, of which Rs 741 crore was NPA. Similarly, power companies had a total outstanding of Rs 1,21,000 crore, of which overdue amount is Rs 446 crore.

“The gross NPAs of public sector banks, in terms of percentage of Gross Advances, have increased from 2.27 per cent to 3.18 per cent,” he said.

Listing out the reasons for the increase, he said switching over to system-based recognisation of NPA by most of the public sector banks during June-September 2011 and increase in interest rates and slowing economic growth had adversely impinged on the repayment capacity of all categories of borrowers, especially small and medium enterprises.

(This article was published on March 20, 2012)
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