India’s war on NPA: Days after the successful Rs 36,400 crore buyout of debt-ridden Bhushan Steel by a Tata Group company, Bankruptcy Board chief MS Sahoo said that the best use of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) is not to use it at all. In last one-and-a-half years of the IBC law, about 750 cases have been admitted by the insolvency courts into the resolution process.
“We have seen several instances where the corporate debtors have paid the default amount after trigger application is filed before the adjudicating authority but before its admission. Some of them pay up as soon as they receive a notice from an operational creditor,” MS Sahoo told news agency PTI. He said that the whole idea of the IBC law is to deter companies and management from making defaults.
“The best use of the Code would be not using it at all,” MS Sahoo said, adding, the scheme of incentives and disincentives under the Code would bring in behavioural changes on the part of stakeholders of a firm which would minimise the incidence of default. The 750 cases also include about 40 companies with corporate defaults identified by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI)
The IBC became operational in December 2016 and following May, the Narendra Modi government infused the RBI with more legislative powers to initiate proceedings to recover bad loans. Two companies — Bhushan Steel and Electrosteels Steel — witnesses successful resolution under the law, while others are under the process. Notably, Bhushan Steel was the largest account in RBI ‘Dirty Dozen’ list identified for an immediate resolution.
Following this resolution, now the focus will be on other major cases such as Amtek Auto which has a loan default of Rs 14,074 crore in which the UK-based Liberty House has emerged biggest bidder. Notably, the firm has asked the top court to decide on the matter.
Other accounts under bidding are Monnet Ispat and Energy for Rs 12,115 crore and Jaypee Infratech Rs 9,635 crore. The total amount of NPAs expected to be resolved soon adds up to over Rs 1 lakh crore, which the banks might not have seen again.