Bank of Baroda Writes Off Rs44,481 Crore Bad Loans of Big Defaulters; Recovers Just 25% in the Past 10 Years
Bank of Baroda (BoB), the second largest public sector bank (PSB), has written off bad loans worth Rs44,481.24 crore of big defaulters with an outstanding of Rs100 crore and more over the past 10 years. During the same period, BoB managed to recover just 25% of the written-off debt, as per information obtained by right to information (RTI) activist Vivek Velankar. 
 
However, the lender refused to provide information about bad loans written off and the recovery of borrowers who owe Rs1 crore and below to BoB between FY12-13 and FY21-22. In a reply, Bipin Chandra Khanna, deputy general manager and public information officer (PIO) at BoB, says, "The information sought is not readily available in material form and hence cannot be provided."
 
Mr Velankar, who is also president of Sajag Nagrik Manch of Pune, says, "When a common borrower defaults, the same banks publish his name and all details through advertisement in newspapers. Why do they want to keep the names of big defaulters hidden? Why the 'confidentiality' clause does not come while publicising names of common borrowers." 
 
In the reply, the PIO of BoB says, "...during the corresponding period, (the) Bank has not specifically written off any amount for any borrower, except in the case where compromise settlements are sanctioned as per (the) Bank's policy and part amount is written off as hair cut."
 
The PIO also clarified, "The figure provided by us of technically written off accounts, which are not being written off actually and the account will remain in the books of the branch. However, in these accounts, borrowers are liable to pay the full dues, and banks are having full recourse to recover the dues. All the recovery measures are being taken as in case of NPA accounts."
 
Like other PSBs, Bank of Baroda also refused to share names of big borrowers who have defaulted on loans over Rs100 crore. The PIO says, "The list of loan takers is related to third party personal information, disclosure of which is exempted as per the provisions of Section 8(1)(j) of RTI Act. Hence cannot be disclosed."
 
Earlier in 2020, the lender had also refused to divulge amounts written off of big borrowers and their names. However, Mr Velankar, who is a shareholder of BoB, asked for the same information during the Bank's annual general meeting (AGM). Then only the lender shared the information on bad loans written off and recovery amount from 2012 to 2020. (Read: Bank of Baroda Follows SBI, Writes Off Rs21,474 Crore in Bad Loans; Recovers only Rs1,057 Crore in Past 8 Years)
 
Recent information procured by Mr Velankar under RTI shows that, from FY12-13 to FY21-22, Bank of Baroda technically wrote off 144 accounts with bad debts of Rs100 crore and more. These add up to Rs44,481.24 crore over eight years, while recovery is about 25% or Rs11,124.09 crore in that period.
 
 
During FY12-13 up to FY18-19, BoB wrote off big defaulters' Rs11,016.20 crore from 51 accounts. However, on 1 April 2019, Vijaya Bank and Dena Bank, were merged with BoB, so the figures from FY19-20 include bad loans written off of these two lenders. 
 
During the past three years, the amalgamated BoB has written off big defaulters' (Rs100 crore and more) bad debt from 93 accounts, worth Rs33,465.04 crore, the information provided under RTI Act shows.
 
Earlier in March this year, Dr Bhagwat Karad, minister of state for finance, told the Rajya Sabha that public sector banks (PSBs) had effected a total recovery of Rs3,12,987 crore in non-performing asset (NPA) accounts and written-off loans since FY18-19 to FY20-21.
 
As per the minister's reply, State Bank of India (SBI) wrote off Rs1.46 lakh crore from FY18-19 to FY20-21. It was followed by Punjab National Bank (PNB) at Rs58,397 crore, Bank of Baroda (BoB) at Rs49,986 crore, and Union Bank of India (UBI) at Rs49,449 crore. (Read: Gross NPA of PSBs Down to Rs5.60 Lakh Crore; Banks Recovered Rs3.13 Lakh Crore in Past 3 Years: Govt)
 
In April 2022, Dr Karad told the upper house that all scheduled commercial banks (SCB) operating in India have cumulatively written off loans of Rs2,02,781 crore in FY20-21. As expected, PSBs lead the pack and have written off bad loans worth Rs1,31,894 during FY20-21. 
 
"Banks evaluate or consider the impact of write-offs as part of their regular exercise to clean up their balance sheet, avail of tax benefits, and optimise capital according to RBI guidelines and policy approved by bank boards. The borrowers of written-off loans continue to be liable for repayment, and the process of recovery of dues from the borrower in written-off loan accounts continues," Dr Karad says. (Read: Rs2.02 Lakh Crore Bad Loans Written Off by Scheduled Commercial Banks in FY21: Govt)  
 
Comments
r_ashok41
2 months ago
banks write off loans taken by influential people and corrupt politicians who are hand in glove with them since both pat each others back for favours.But when in comes to ordinary citizens at any time will a bank waive off loans given to them saying it is bad debt etc .No they will do do so as everyone knows.
ASHWIN MEHTA
2 months ago
We have been told that all PSBs and the Pvt. banks are regulated by RBI. Try to go to RBI Head office at Mumbai. I was having an issue against ICICI Bank about the SCSS scheme Nomination issues with them. The branch people are helpless, as the real people working are behind the curtains. They are respectfully called as "BACK OFFICE PERSONAL". They never come in person to any individual and solve their problem.So all banks are protecting them physically. In my case, after listening the entire story of mine in person, the RBI officer at the end told me to write everything in details and send it to a particular email.(2020). My contention is : Why he listened to me for almost 1 hour and wasted my time, if at the end, I have to write everything on email. But those government officers are scared to talk to a legal team and the managers of the pvt. banks like ICICI, HDFC etc.. and hence advised you to go in legal way. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Even after reporting this issue on govt. portal, it is not addressed even after 2 years.(2022). I was left with no other choice, but to run to other nearby bank, where such rule for the same government scheme was not in existence.(As per ICICI, when you invest under SCSS of GOI, you cannot nominate any NRI as your nominee/s. My both daughter are in USA and are NRI. My wife is already deceased. Can any one explain me : To whom I can nominate to my SCSS account. ?????????. But the same account was opened with BOI, and no such restrictions are there. Who gave the right to ICICI Top brass to print such forms for SCSS scheme( Printed by ICICI as SCSS-2019, where as the actual name of the scheme is SCSS-2004) which is in fact controlled by GOI and all banks are merely facilitators, to collect the money. NO ANSWERS SO FAR. If any one from RBI is reading this, please please help me.
ASHWIN MEHTA
2 months ago
They can give, they can forgive, they can do any nonsense till the time any strict actions are taken against them. They are not answerable. You need to come out of your thin sensitive skin and wear hard skin, forget the word MORALITY, ETHICS if you do not want to get disturbed by news of these Big Bastards. The rights of common man are only in books, not in practice. This is India. But donot worry, if you google out, the more bigger culprits to evade taxes, its USA. It is at No.1, inspite of declaring as the most advance developed country of the world. So be happy and try to join the 100 Crore Club, you won't have even the time to express your opinion here. Good Luck.
r_ashok41
2 months ago
How can they write off so easily without any effort from them to confisticate their properties and it should be referred to nclt and now the bad bank debts programme it should be transferred to it so that they can make progress on it.
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