Minister of state for heavy industries Anant Geete said there were 65 units in the list of sick PSUs as of March 31, 2014.
The list of sick PSUs includes Scooters India, Hindustan Shipyard, ITI and Hindustan Cables. Geete did not name the other PSUs which are slated to be closed down.
A PSU is declared sick after it has accumulated losses in any financial year equal to 50% or more of its average net worth during four preceding years.
It is not clear as yet whether Air India and MTNL will be among the five PSUs that are shut down. In case of companies that are being closed, Geete said the government is offering their employees a "very good" VRS package.