Willful Defaulters’ Amount Soared A Whopping 300% in Last 5 Years

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Congress’s chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala. — File photo

“The tremors of the massive mishandling of the economy in the past five years under a government which mastered the art of disruptive economic policy measures are still being felt,” Congress leader Randeep Surjewala said.

Abdul Bari Masoud |  Caravan Daily

NEW DELHI — The government’s admission in Parliament that willful defaulters’ amount soared by Rs 121,700 crore from just Rs 39,504 crore has provided fresh ammunition to opposition to take the government to task. Congress said despite getting the renewed mandate, India’s economic woes under this regime continued to simmer. Referring to demonetization and GST, it alleged that this government’s disruptive economic policy measures are still being felt.

In reply to a question, the government on Monday told the Lok Sabha (Lower House) that the list of willful defaulters have gone to 8,582 in 2018-19 and willful defaults amount has soared by Rs 121,700 crore from just Rs 39,504 crore in March 2014.

The government quoted the figures published by Transunion Cibil, a credit information company. According to it, India’s largest Public Sector Bank, State Bank of India (SBI) alone accounted for Rs 39,471 crore of wilful defaults as of December 2018. This alone is a surge of a whopping 308%!

Attacking the Modi government, senior Congress leader and chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said even though BJP has got a renewed mandate, but India’s economic woes under its regime continue to simmer.

“The tremors of the massive mishandling of the economy in the past five years under a government which mastered the art of disruptive economic policy measures are still being felt,” he said.

Under this government’s watch, defaulters like Vijay Mallya, Mehul Choksi, Nirav Modi, Lalit Modi, and others ran away from the country with thousands of crores rupees. Even just before leaving the country, Vijay Mallya had reportedly met the then finance minister Arun Jaitley.    

The Congress leader said the country is staring at a below average monsoon and reeling under a severe water crisis, private investment is also taking a huge hit, thereby deepening the economic woes of the people of the country.

He also pointed out that investment has hit rock bottom and both Public Sector Undertakings and Private Industry are suffering due to this.

The situation is so bad that even the cost of funding for non-bank lenders has gone up by 50 basis points. Investors are also scrutinizing Indian banks that have loan exposure to companies with stressed debt.

Not only is ₹1 trillion ($14.4 Billion) of 11 firms wiped out, cracks of the credit crunch spread far and wide. A major challenge is refinancing of outstanding bonds of ₹2.03 trillion.

On the resignation of RBI Deputy Governor Viral Acharya six months before his term, Congress leader said  Acharya’s name was in the long list of experts who attempted to show the ‘Mirror of Truth’ to BJP regime.

It is to be mentioned here that earlier economic advisors, 2 RBI Governors, and a NitiAayog VC have tendered resignation before their term expired.

It only proved that under the present government, there is a culture of disrespecting expertise, as also talent, said Surjewala.

“BJP Govt only needs ‘Yes Men’ & ‘Puppets’- Not ‘Experts Wizards,” he added.

He said the country is worried the way the economy is heading nowhere while the willful defaults are surging by the day and banks are bleeding.

Investors and Industry both are waiting for the ‘Suit Boot Ki Sarkar’ to tide over this economic calamity and self-created mess, he said.

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