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Finally, RBI’s list of big defaulters that you won’t find elsewhere

The apex court had directed the RBI in a 2015 ruling to reveal the list of defaulters but the Central bank had been dragging its feet on the matter until now
New Delhi: After dragging its feet on the matter for the longest time, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has complied with the Supreme Court (SC) and the Central Information Commission (CIC) order and has provided the list of 41 big defaulters to Lucknow-based activist Dr Nutan Thakur. Thakur had sought the two lists of big defaulters prepared by the RBI itself.

The lists

The first batch of big defaulters includes 12 companies consisting of the following:
  1. ABG Shipyard Limited
  2. Alok Industries Limited
  3. Amtek Auto Limited
  4. Bhushan Power and Steel Limited
  5. Bhushan Steel Limited
  6. Electrosteel Steels Limited
  7. Era Infra Engineering Limited
  8. Essar Steel India Limited
  9. Jaypee Infratech Limited
  10. Jyoti Structures Limited
  11. Lanco Infratech Limited
  12. Monnet Ispat and Energy Limited
The second batch of big defaulters has 28 companies on the list:
  1. Anrak Aluminium Limited
  2. Asian Colour Coated Ispat Limited
  3. Bilt Graphic Papers Products Limited
  4. Castex Technologies Limited
  5. Coastal Projects Limited
  6. East Coast Energy Private Limited
  7. Essar Power (Jharkhand) Limited
  8. Essar Powers (India) Limited
  9. GET Power Limited
  10. IVRCL Limited
  11. Jai Balaji Industries Limited
  12. Jai Prakash Associates Limited
  13. Jayaswal Neco Industries Limited
  14. Monnet Power Company Limited
  15. Nagarjuna Oil Corporation Limited
  16. Orchid Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals Limited
  17. Ruchi Soya Industries Limited
  18. Sel Manufacturing Company Limited
  19. Shakti Bhog Foods Limited
  20. Soma Enterprise Limited
  21. Transstroy (India) Limited
  22. Unity Infraprojects Limited
  23. Ushdev International Limited
  24. Uttam Galva Metallics Limited
  25. Uttam Galva Steels Limited
  26. Videocon Industries Limited
  27. Videocon Telecommunication Limited
  28. Visa Steel Limited
  29. Wind World (India) Limited
All of these companies are currently in National Company Law Tribunal’s (NCLT) dock under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) or have been sold off to bidders under the legislation.

The backdrop

The CPIO of RBI had denied information under section 8(1)(d) of RTI Act, while the Appellate Authority denied information saying that it is prohibited under section 45E of the RBI Act. The apex court had directed the RBI in a 2015 ruling to reveal the list of defaulters. However, the Central bank had put in place a disclosure policy in November 2016 that barred the release of information related to inspections. Information Commissioner Suresh Chandra had also agreed to Thakur’s submission that the information is being sought purely in public interest because the list of defaulters is of immense public importance and the people have a right to know about these defaulters. So, hiding names of big defaulters is definitely against the spirit of the RTI Act, the CIC had observed.