Work without fear or favour, FM tells PSBs

Work without fear or favour, FM tells PSBs

Concerned over rising bad loans, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley  asked the chiefs of PSU banks to deal sternly with the issue of rising non-performing assets without any fear or favour.

He also said the government has already taken various steps to streamline the appointment of PSU bank chiefs, which will help in making PSBs professional organisations.

The minister was addressing the heads of Public sector Banks (PSBs) and financial institutions here.

Bankers should “work in a professional manner without any fear or favour”, Jaitley said, adding that the government has taken steps to streamline the process of appointment of Chief Executive Officers and Executive Directors of the PSBs to introduce objectivity in the process.

The decision making process must be influenced by professional reasons and not collateral ones, he said, adding that any external influence would be considered as a disqualification.

He further asked the bankers to take necessary corrective measures in order to bring down their Non-Performing Assets.

Later, talking to reporters, Jaitley said: “Over the last 2-3 years, on account of slowdown, one area of concern is that the NPA has risen. Therefore, the proactive steps to be taken to ensure that NPAs come down have been discussed.”

He also asked the bankers to take steps to increase the credit flow to various sectors of the economy and exuded optimism that credit growth would pick up in the second quarter as large number of projects are queueing up for credit.

On the condition of the economy, Jaitley said that global growth is quite patchy.
“There is great opportunity for India to attract foreign investment and large numbers of international entrepreneurs are showing their keen interest in India,” he said.

According to a report by research firm ICRA, PSU banks' gross NPAs are estimated at 4.4-4.7 per cent as on March 31, 2015, as against 4.4 per cent as on March 31, 2014 and 4.6 per cent at the end of June, 2014.

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