New Delhi: Dues from big wilful defaulters of Punjab National Bank (PNB) fell by 0.87% to 15,354.52 crore on 30 June compared to 15,490 crore as on 31 May 2018, bank data has showed. Big wilful defaulters owed PNB 15,171.91 crore in 2017-18, resulting in standalone net loss of 12,282.82 crore in 2017-18 as against a profit of 1,324.80 crore in 2016-17.

According to PNB, big wilful defaulters are those which borrowed 25 lakh and above from the public sector bank and haven't paid back.

The banking sector, particularly public sector banks, is grappling with mounting non-performing assets (NPAs), or bad loans, and a host of scams and frauds.

Bank NPAs stood at 8.31 trillion as of December 2017. The total NPA write-off by the public sector banks stood at over 1.20 trillion in 2017-18, with State Bank of India accounting for nearly 25% of the total write-offs at 40,196 crore. SBI is followed by Canara Bank ( 8,310 crore), Punjab National Bank ( 7,407 crore) and Bank of Baroda ( 4,948 crore).

Scam-hit PNB, which has suffered a fraud of 14,357 crore allegedly carried out by jeweller Nirav Modi and his associates, witnessed a sharp deterioration in its asset quality with gross loans mounting to 18.38% of gross advances at the end of March 2018, as against 12.53% a year ago. PNB NPAs rose to 11.24% in 2017-18 against 7.81% year ago. Gross NPAs, in absolute terms, surged to 86,620 crore in the fourth quarter of 2017-18 as compared to 55,370 crore in the year-ago period. Similarly, the net NPA also rose to 48,684.29 crore from 32,702 crore at the end of March 2017.

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