The Supreme Court on Wednesday said it was not possible for it to direct State-run banks to recover more than R1 lakh crore from its defaulters, but at the same time asked the government to consider using the services of its Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) to recover the amount.
A bench comprising Justices J.M. Panchal and A.K. Patnaik asked the government to let the SFIO tackle the issue and help reduce the non-performing assets (NPA), adding: "We hope that the centre makes SFIO an independent agency to deal with NPAs and reduce it."
The court was disposing of a 12-year-old public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Common Cause, an NGO. It refused to intervene in the executive's domain, stating a committee, headed by a RBI's Deputy Governor, was already looking into the issue.