The Reserve Bank of India had issued a Press Release on May 22, 2017 outlining the steps taken and those on the anvil pursuant to the promulgation of the Banking Regulation (Amendment) Ordinance, 2017. The Press Release had mentioned inter alia that the RBI would be constituting a Committee comprised majorly of its independent Board Members to advise it in regard to the cases that may be considered for reference for resolution under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (IBC).
2. An Internal Advisory Committee (IAC) was accordingly constituted and it held its first meeting on June 12, 2017. The IAC, in the meeting, agreed to focus on large stressed accounts at this stage and accordingly took up for consideration the accounts which were classified partly or wholly as non-performing from amongst the top 500 exposures in the banking system.
3. The IAC also arrived at an objective, non-discretionary criterion for referring accounts for resolution under IBC. In particular, the IAC recommended for IBC reference all accounts with fund and non-fund based outstanding amount greater than ₹ 5000 crore, with 60% or more classified as non-performing by banks as of March 31, 2016. The IAC noted that under the recommended criterion, 12 accounts totaling about 25 per cent of the current gross NPAs of the banking system would qualify for immediate reference under IBC.
4. As regards the other non-performing accounts which do not qualify under the above criteria, the IAC recommended that banks should finalise a resolution plan within six months. In cases where a viable resolution plan is not agreed upon within six months, banks should be required to file for insolvency proceedings under the IBC.
5. The Reserve Bank, based on the recommendations of the IAC, will accordingly be issuing directions to banks to file for insolvency proceedings under the IBC in respect of the identified accounts. Such cases will be accorded priority by the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT).
6. The details of the resolution framework in regard to the other non-performing accounts will be released in the coming days.
7. The circular on revised provisioning norms for cases accepted for resolution under the IBC is being issued separately.