Banks referred a record Rs 1.09 trillion worth of stressed assets to the corporate debt restructuring (CDR) cell between April and December, exceeding the level of Rs 91,400 crore for all of the previous financial year, an official said today.
"There has been an increase in the number of high-value accounts being referred by the banks," the CDR cell official said on condition of anonymity.
Banks referred as many as 83 cases in the first nine months of this financial year, compared with 129 cases during 2012-13, the official said.
In December alone, 14 cases worth over Rs 18,000 crore were referred to the cell, the official said, adding that the bulk of them came in the last 10 days of the month.
The CDR cell approved 44 cases involving Rs 66,000 crore in December, the officer said.
Big-ticket loans that were restructured during the fiscal include Rs 13,500 crore from Gammon India, Rs 7,320 crore of Lanco and Electrocast Steel's Rs 6,460 crore.
The CDR cell is a facility for banks to jointly resolve stressed assets. Loans are restructured by typically extending the repayment period to accommodate temporary cash flow issues faced by borrowers.
In recent years, amid the economic gloom, delays in project clearances and high interest rates, there has been an increase in the prevalence of stress, which has hurt the asset quality of banks.
According to the Reserve Bank of India, the amount of recast loans touched an all-time high of Rs 4 trillion, or 10.2 per cent of overall advances, as of the September quarter.