New Delhi: The Reserve Bank of India has finally released a list of India’s 30 major wilful defaulters in response to a Right to Information (RTI) application filed by The Wire in May 2019, stated a report. This list of defaulters has been released exactly four years after the Supreme Court had directed the apex bank to do so.

As per RBI’s definition, a company will be classified as a ‘wilful defaulter’ if it fails to repay its dues despite being capable of meeting the obligations. In the past, for more than ten years, the RBI had dismissed all RTI applications seeking data on the wilful defaulters’ list by claiming that releasing the data would be against the economic interests of the country. In the list of India’s 30 major wilful defaulters, fugitive diamantaire Mehul Choksi’s name is mentioned along with his three companies, stated the Central bank, according to a report.

Since RBI had not previously disclosed the details on defaulters, individual banks and lenders have relied on suits filed to recover the outstanding amount, stated a report. Notably, TransUnion Cibil has been collating such information generated over the years. As per the data, these 30 companies are entitled to pay a total outstanding amount of more than Rs 50,000 crores so far. Citing the TransUnion Cibil data, a report stated that more than 11,000 companies had willfully defaulted a sum of Rs 1.61 lakh crore as of December 2018.

Meanwhile, on Wednesday, the RBI had superseded the Board of Directors of Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Limited (DHFL) to initiate insolvency proceedings, citing governance concerns and company defaults.