RBI said that Indian banks have written off debts amounting to Rs. 68,607 crores of some willful debtors who come under the top 50 as a response to a petition filed under the RTI (Right To Information Act).
These defaulters consist of economy offenders like Mehul Choksi and Vijay Mallya, till September 30, 2019, according to details provided by the Reserve Bank of India to an RTI query.
This file was petitioned by activist Saket Gokhale and Randeep Surjewala, The chief spokesperson of Congress released the list of the defaulters while sharing the responsibility of the query. Rahul Gandhi said that he has asked the government in parliament the names of top 50 defaulters but he said that the finance minister did not give any response. He further said that since now the list is exposed, we know why it was being hidden.
In the last Parliament session, Rahul Gandhi had asked the government to provide a list of top 50 bank loan defaulters in the country, leading to sharp exchanges and uproar in the Lok Sabha.
According to the RTI reply, Gitanjali Gems, Choksi’s company, tops the list of the defaulters with a huge amount of Rs 5,492 crore. At number 9 is the Vijay Mallya’s Kingfisher Airlines with an outstanding amount of Rs. 1,943 crore which is written off. Other defaulters include Forever Precious Jewellery and Diamonds Pvt. Ltd. which have has loans of Rs 1,962 crore written off.
Choski’s other firms have also taken a loan which is now written off.
Vikram Kothari’s Rotomac is the fourth in the list, according to the details provided by the RBI, according to the RTI reply. He and his son Rahul Kothari were arrested by the CBI for bank loan default.
Surjewala said that he needs an answer from PM, as to why these loans were written off. He further told reporters in a video conference that writing off these loans depicts the dishonesty of the Government and it can no longer be accepted. He also said that the whole nation is fighting against the pandemic, the government lacks in providing money to states, but it has money to write off these loans.
Surjewala also claimed that a total of Rs 80,893 crore was waived till September 2019 of defaulters and Rs 2.12 lakh crore in 2018-19.