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Tackling NPAs: Banks to kick off insolvency of Bhushan Steel, Essar Steel, Electrosteel; total loan Rs 92,000 cr

Mumbai: Lenders led by the State Bank of India on Thursday decided to begin insolvency proceedings against Bhushan Steel, Essar Steel and Electrosteel Steels by referring them to the NCLT for recovery under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC).

The decision was taken at a marathon meeting chaired by the SBI. While Bhushan Steel is in default of Rs 44,478 crore to banks, Essar Steel owes Rs 37,284 crore and Electrosteel Steels Rs 10,273.6 crore (combined about Rs 92,000 crore).

 Tackling NPAs: Banks to kick off insolvency of Bhushan Steel, Essar Steel, Electrosteel; total loan Rs 92,000 cr

Decision was taken by banks led by SBI. Reuters

These three borrowers are among the 12 accounts identified by the Reserve Bank for immediate reference to National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT). These 12 accounts alone constitute a quarter of the over Rs 8 trillion of NPAs.

Bankers, led by IDBI Bank, will be meeting on Friday to decide on Bhushan Power & Steel which has been in default of Rs 37,248 crore to the lenders.

The development couldn't be immediately confirmed with these companies.

Besides these three accounts, the other stressed borrowers include Amtek Auto (Rs 14,074 crore), Alok Industries (Rs 22,075 crore), Monnet Ispat (Rs 12,115 crore) and Lanco Infra (Rs 44,364.6 crore).

Era Infra (Rs 10,065.4 crore), Jypaee Infratech (Rs 9,635 crore), ABG Shipyard (Rs 6,953 crore) and Jyoti Structures (Rs 5,165 crore) were also among the identified stressed accounts, according to reports.

"The meeting on these three companies was to finalise the application which banks will be filing to NCLT," said a senior banker.

Lenders want all the bankers in the consortium to give their consent before registering the case with NCLT.

Officials from these three companies were also present at Thursday's meetings, bankers said.
On Saturday, Lanco Infratech said the RBI has directed its lead banker IDBI Bank to initiate insolvency procedure for the company.

Once a case is referred to NCLT, there is a 180-day time line to decide on a resolution plan though 90 days can be given in addition. If a plan is not decided, then the company will go into liquidation.

The internal advisory committee (IAC) of the RBI after its meeting on June 13 had recommended 12 accounts totalling about 25 percent of the gross NPAs of the banking system for immediate reference under IBC.

These 12 accounts referred by the RBI have an exposure of more than Rs 5,000 crore each, with 60 percent or more classified as bad loans by banks as of March 2016.

The banking system's total NPAs stand at over Rs 8 trillion of which Rs 6 trillion are with public sector banks.

Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank on Thursday expanded the oversight committee by appointing three more members to the high-level panel that will vet the process to resolve mounting bad loans bogging down the banking sector.

Former chief vigilance commissioner Pradeep Kumar will head the now five-member panel that will work through multiple benches, RBI said in a statement.

The expansion follows promulgation of the Banking Regulation (Amendment) Ordinance 2017 last month. The ordinance had outlined the reconstitution of the Overseeing Committee (OC) with an expanded mandate.

"The Reserve Bank has since brought the OC under its aegis. The OC will, for the present, have five members, including a chairman, and will work through multiple benches as may be necessary and constituted by the Chairman to opine on the cases referred to it by the banks," it said.

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Updated Date: Jun 23, 2017 08:36:03 IST

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