Two days after the government announced easing of withdrawal limits for marriage purpose, customers were left in the lurch as banks refused to issue money citing non-issuance of operational guidelines from the Reserve Bank of India. Public sector as well as private banks told customers that since they had not received the guidelines for wedding purpose, the maximum limit in their internal systems was restricted at Rs 2,000 instead of the permitted maximum amount of Rs 2.5 lakh for wedding purpose to the families of bride and groom each.
Bank officials said they may allow withdrawal of Rs 2.5 lakh by the families with weddings from next week after they receive operational guidelines from the Reserve Bank. “In absence of operational guidelines from RBI, we are unable to give Rs 2.5 lakh for marriage purpose to each of the family (of bride and groom). We are awaiting direction from RBI,” Punjab National Bank managing director Usha Ananthasubramanian said.
“We expect the norms by Monday and hopefully by Tuesday, branches should start disbursing for marriage. We understand that the amount can be drawn only by either parents or the person getting married. Only one of them will be permitted to draw this amount. The limit of Rs 2.5 lakh will apply separately to the girl’s and the boy’s family,” she said. A senior official of a leading private bank said, “We are waiting for RBI to issue guidelines for withdrawal for wedding purpose. Till those come, we won’t be able to issue the money to customers.”
The reserve bank has not issued operational guidelines so far. Earlier this week, the government had slashed the limit for over the counter exchange of old currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 to Rs 2,000 per person from Rs 4,500 announced earlier. At the same time, it also permitted families having weddings to draw up to Rs 2.5 lakh in cash from their own bank accounts while encouraging families to incur wedding expenses through cheques or digital means.
The government had scrapped the currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 from November 8 midnight. Although the new series of Rs 2,000 currency notes have come into markets, the circulation of new Rs 500 notes is still picking up.