Long queues, 40 per cent ATMs working: Government, RBI meet today to ease transition

According to RBI, the new Rs 500 notes have currently been introduced only in Delhi and Mumbai with plans to gradually distribute them across the country over the next fortnight.

Written by Amitav Ranjan , Khushboo Narayan , Sandeep Singh | New Delhi/mumbai | Updated: November 12, 2016 9:47 am
rs 500 ban, rs 1000 ban, currency ban, black money, black money raid, income tax raid, reserve bank of indian, rbi, narendra modi, modi, atm closed, banks open, currency exchange, old notes change, invalid currency, indian express news, government, government rbi meet, business, indian express news, india news Since Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the demonetisation move on Tuesday night, over Rs 14 lakh crore worth of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes have been pulled out of circulation.

As people waited hours in long queues outside banks and only 40 per cent of ATMs functioned on Friday, two days after the government invalidated currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 to curb corruption and black money, the Union Finance Ministry decided to meet Reserve Bank of India officials early on Saturday to resolve the immediate shortage of cash.

“Although there is sufficient new currency available, the problem is emerging in the logistics of its movement and timely stocking. We have called the RBI officials to understand their difficulty and work out a solution,” an official said.

The official said that “1.5 billion pieces” of Rs 2,000 notes — amounting to Rs 3 lakh crore — had been brought into circulation and another 1.5 billion would be infused soon to take the month-end stock to 3 billion pieces, or Rs 6 lakh crore. “There is sufficient money,” said the official.

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According to RBI, the new Rs 500 notes have currently been introduced only in Delhi and Mumbai with plans to gradually distribute them across the country over the next fortnight.

“The current emphasis is to flood the market with higher value Rs 2,000 notes to quickly make up for the decrease in money supply due to the demonetisation of old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes,” the official said.

Since Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the demonetisation move on Tuesday night, over Rs 14 lakh crore worth of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes have been pulled out of circulation.

The RBI has started printing the new Rs 1,000 notes and plans to bring them in circulation from December, said sources, adding that once volumes rise, the existing supply of Rs 2,000 would be “controlled” to curb inflationary pressure.

Meanwhile, leading players in the cash logistics industry said that only 40 per cent of the 2.2 lakh ATMs in the country were functional on Friday, when the machines opened after being shut for two days to facilitate the removal of old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes.

“While 70-75 per cent of old currency notes in ATMs across the country have been withdrawn and refilled, only 40 per cent of them (ATMs) were functional during the day due to very high demand and shortage of currency,” said Navroz Dastur, managing director, NCR Corporation, India & South Asia, a leading ATM deployer with a market share of 47 per cent.

According to sources in the industry, even the ATMs that were operational dispensed cash only for a couple of hours due to shortage of Rs 100 notes and the new Rs 2,000 notes, and logistics constraints. They said the problem was compounded by the fact that the new Rs 500 notes were yet to reach banks.

By Friday evening, sources said, the industry had withdrawn around 90 per cent of the invalid currency notes from ATMs across 650 districts.

“At least 40,000 people have been working nonstop for the last 72 hours to do their best to refill the ATMs. But this task is unprecedented and the nation has to come together and see the efforts made by the cash logistics industry and the employees of banks to ensure that public inconvenience is reduced,” said Rituraj Sinha, president of the Cash Logistics Association of India and co-chairman of the FICCI private security sector committee.

“In the next 15 days, the ATMs will become fully functional as currency comes in,” said Dastur.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI), meanwhile, said in a statement that there was enough cash available with banks and that all arrangements have been made to ensure that currency notes are made available all over the country.

“Bank branches have already started exchanging notes since November 10 and it may take a while for the banks to recalibrate their ATMs; once the ATMs are functional, members of the public will be able to withdraw up to a maximum of Rs 2,000 per card per day up to November 18, 2016; and after that, withdraw up to Rs 4,000 per day per card. Several ATMs have started functioning from this morning as the banks could complete recalibration of these machines to allow withdrawals up to Rs 2,000 to begin with,” the RBI stated.

On Friday, most of the ATMs that dispensed cash belonged to public sector banks.

Arundhati Bhattacharya, chairperson of State Bank of India, the country’s largest public sector bank, said SBI has already made 21,000 onsite ATMs and 8,000 cash deposit machines functional. Offsite ATMs will begin operations very soon, she said.

According to Bhattacharya, the bank recorded deposits of Rs 22,150 crore and currency exchange of Rs 723 crore on Thursday and Rs 10,081 crore and Rs 524 crore, respectively, till 3 pm on Friday.

Some private bank officials said they were yet to receive a sufficient number of currency notes from the RBI to dispense in all their ATMs.

“The bank is working closely with the RBI and is making all efforts to continuously replenish cash at its ATMs to bring the situation to normalcy at the earliest,” said an Axis Bank spokesperson.

The cash logistics industry employs 40,000 people and 8,800 cash vans to refill ATMs in India. In a day, this industry serves about 25,000 ATMs. In the last 48 hours, the industry has not only withdrawn old currency notes but also modified the switches of ATMs to dispense mostly Rs 100 currency notes.

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First Published on: November 12, 2016 3:20 am
  1. S
    Santosh
    Nov 12, 2016 at 3:47 am
    In advanced western countries Currencies are Phased out quietly without affecting the common people, thus old currencies disappear without bringing hardship and misery for people, that's why they are called civilized world. Interest of common man whose potion is 99 pecent should be kept in mind before any action which is counter productive because the one percent who hold black money are always one step ahead of the Government because they love Gold rather than paper.
    Reply
    1. A
      Amrita
      Nov 12, 2016 at 12:36 am
      Please man the coordination cells and publicize their nos Finance Min and RBI and do whatever is needed to smoothen operations at the ground level. The public spent time and energy ensuring tht the lines do not break and they still did. the private bank did not post guards to do this. At the end of this effort we were unable to get money.
      Reply
      1. A
        ashok s
        Nov 12, 2016 at 1:11 am
        I don't even see a single sign of strain on the faces of black marketeers. They are all laughing at us when we stand in qs . a bike dealer Ner sonde ,I one same jerk who sold all his stock in crs of rupess and is not even bothered as he will split and deposit such money in various account of his extended family members . a very cool idea prevailing in Mira road. Same is case with khan a brothel and dance bar pimp. Nissar a uuslim party activist. Police are hand in gloves with them
        Reply
        1. K
          Krishnakumar
          Nov 13, 2016 at 7:49 am
          Ill planned and ill executed decision. While on the one side, its objective is to bring out Black and Fake money, a welcome measure but its execution without proper planning is going to nullify its object. The RBI should have enough stock of new notes before proceeding to invalidate the currencies, see that ATM machines are updated to read the new currency notes, then should have issued the order. How will the hairstyle appear when it is dressed in a hurry? Dishevelled or disarray
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          1. R
            rishi
            Nov 12, 2016 at 1:03 am
            .....the success of this bold mission against black-money must go fully to the credit of the Staff And Management Of The Banks all over India .....account holders of bank must acknowledge it in the spirit of responsible citizen to the staff of their bank that they appreciate the said staff dealing with administrative pressure on them in the implementation stages of this huge transactional exercise required to be executed at such a short notice and in a very short time in order to make ready-cash reach all the banks' customers in record time .
            Reply
            1. R
              rishi
              Nov 12, 2016 at 1:40 am
              Praiseworthy coordination between the concerned agencies.....RBI and the rest of the banking sector all over India.....special thanks to the Staff And Management of Banks All Over India For Withstanding The Intense Adminstrative Pressure On Them To Make Success Of This Bold Misssion Against Black-Money. Every Account-Holder Of A Bank-Account Must Thank The Banking Sector For Making Her Dream Of A Clean Financial System Come True......
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              1. G
                Gopikanta Ghosh
                Nov 12, 2016 at 1:45 pm
                Total chaos
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                1. G
                  Gopikanta Ghosh
                  Nov 12, 2016 at 1:44 pm
                  Total chaos. Those 40% ATMs operated not even for half a day. It was torture
                  Reply
                  1. H
                    han
                    Nov 12, 2016 at 5:52 am
                    ic people comment without understanding the suffering faced.
                    Reply
                    1. S
                      SK Iyer
                      Nov 12, 2016 at 3:38 am
                      '40 per cent ATMs working'! in the cordinary course, not a new problem. but, onlybeing noticed now!! and the panacea to solving problems is meetings and blah blah.. not planning!
                      Reply
                      1. S
                        sunny
                        Nov 12, 2016 at 6:21 am
                        On 8th when I heard the news of demonetization I praised Modiji, but as time p I have a feeling that the black money issue is not going to solve as Govt is planning to issue Rs2000/ which is more convenient to these black money people. The problem is with ordinary people, With out any worry, the mining expert Mr Reddy is happily arranging wedding for his children at a cost of Rs500cr (paper news). If his finance is white then who is the black money holder. I think all black money holders are enjoying the act, I think the Rs55000cr deposited in SBI may be black money and deposited ma y be poor proxy farmer who has to bow his head in front of these money lenders/black money holders.
                        Reply
                        1. L
                          L bhadrapati Devi
                          Nov 12, 2016 at 6:02 am
                          Media and Kongress, AAPtard and other political parties having huge stock of black money try to sabotage the plan by organizing long queue of political workers. It is easy to organize 200 persons to have a look of long queue. In Guwahati and Imphal, there is no long queue despite having only few operational ATM. Politicians and media should not provoke panic because it may lead to chaos.
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                          1. M
                            mort
                            Nov 12, 2016 at 6:37 am
                            After PINK CRICKET BALLS NOW SUPER PINK BANK NOTES. It is in tune with the times. Welcome Sodom !
                            Reply
                            1. M
                              mathimathi
                              Nov 12, 2016 at 7:29 am
                              Each and every ORDINARY indians except rich and bhaktas may be forced to eat old Rs.500 Rs.1000 notes like Gau mom compelled to eat Posters in streets. All because of the ic RSS/vhp SANGVI Snakes devanagari ruling Hindustan. Idi8 RSS/vhp Sangvi Snakes devanagari half pants.
                              Reply
                              1. M
                                mathimathi
                                Nov 12, 2016 at 7:39 am
                                what can we expect from Jumla party jungle raj throughout hindustan becuz of 31% mandate in 2014 AD. THEY MUST BE THROWN OUT IN 2019 AD.
                                Reply
                                1. D
                                  D N
                                  Nov 11, 2016 at 11:40 pm
                                  It is horrifying. No cash, not a single ATM is working even after 4 days. Jaitley has proved to be a clown of the highest order.
                                  Reply
                                  1. V
                                    Vihari Naidu
                                    Nov 12, 2016 at 4:16 am
                                    The new notes don't fit in the old ATMs as they have different dimensions(weight and thickness). It will take at least a 10-15 days to programme the new dimensions and update all the ATMs. I don't know what these 40% ATMs are issuing. Heard RBI pump Rs.100 notes in bad condition into the banking system. These were supposed to be disposed off but now they are again circulated. The government didn't do it's homework at all. Thumbs down.
                                    Reply
                                    1. A
                                      Anand Ch
                                      Nov 12, 2016 at 12:39 am
                                      It is criminal to keep ATMs dry. Fill them with 100 denomination if other denominations are not there. Ease the currency shortage fear.
                                      Reply
                                      1. R
                                        rajan luthra
                                        Nov 12, 2016 at 2:52 am
                                        It is a herculean task to replenish demonetised currency and shall take time to alleviate common man's difficulty. Long queues are to be seen everywhere but what cannot be cured has to be endured.
                                        Reply
                                        1. R
                                          Rajesh
                                          Nov 12, 2016 at 1:20 am
                                          Action with no planning leading to disster for 99 pecent potion while the 1 percent continue have money in Foreign countries, and the country in form of gold, property, stock market etc. Politicians in power continue to travel, enjoy and everyday business as usual while common people the real victims. People are stuggling for their own hard earn money while no effect on those in power leading a luxury life style. Hope people will never forget this in their life.
                                          Reply
                                          1. R
                                            Ramesh Chhabra
                                            Nov 12, 2016 at 2:54 am
                                            In the market 100 Rs. notes are required, but RBI is circulating 2000 Rs. notes. After few hours Banks declares cash is over. ATMs and Banks do not have 100 Rs. notes. It seems RBI is to generate problems only. RBI does not know how to solve the problem. RBI should understand who will return the balance in 100 Rs, notes against 2000 Rs. notes in the market, petrol pumps, Railway Stations, etc.
                                            Reply
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