New Delhi: The troubled Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Ltd (DHFL) has blamed speculative media reports for hurting the goodwill of the company and fuelling negativity at a time when non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) are battling a liquidity crunch.

“There have been several media reports and articles during the last couple of weeks carrying absolutely speculative, unsubstantiated and wild allegations and several rumours. These reports and articles are provided citing "unnamed sources" or "market sources" and have been without any credible backing," the company said in a filing to the stock exchanges.

DHFL said these reports have created panic, hurting the overall sentiment for the firm and its stakeholders comprising retail shareholders, fixed deposit and non-convertible debenture holders.

The NBFC said it was working on a debt resolution plan with lenders to protect the interests of stakeholders and such reports will increase the possibility of a delay in the process. As of 6 July, DHFL had a total debt of 83,873 crore, of which banks have an exposure of 38,342 crore.

According to a Mint report, about 25 group companies to which DHFL had lent a total of 14,000 crore had an average profit of about 1 lakh, a forensic audit of the company has found. This has raised suspicion that the mortgage lender may have diverted funds.

The findings of the forensic audit, initiated by the lenders to the debt-laden home financing company, can potentially affect a proposed debt-restructuring plan aimed at reviving DHFL. It may also prompt these lenders to push for a management change in the Wadhawan family-run company.

In August, DHFL said its draft resolution plan submitted to lenders spares creditors to take haircuts on principal payments. Lenders are currently assessing the resolution plan under the Reserve Bank of India’s 7 June guidelines on resolution of stressed assets.

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