LIVID AT not getting money despite waiting for long for successive days, people in two villages of Kerala’s Kozhikode district on Tuesday forced the authorities to close two bank branches. The banks later resumed operation with police protection.
The Syndicate Bank’s Perambra branch had suspended disbursal on Friday morning since it had run out of cash. After the weekend holidays, the branch reopened on Monday but it did not get currency due to the state-wide hartal.
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“People cannot be blamed for agitating against the bank. They turned up for the third day (Friday, Monday and Tuesday) but had to return empty-handed,” a bank official said. “They forced us to down shutters. We later resumed operations with police support. We don’t know whether the branch will get money tomorrow either.”
At Vilangad village of the district, the branch of Kerala Gramin Bank has been running without cash since last Thursday. The bank does not have its own currency chest and has to arrange money from other banks, mainly the State Bank of Travancore. This has hit the bank’s bid to ensure supply of currency at its branches in remote villages, officials said.
“Today, many people queued up for the third day. They did not allow the branch to function after hearing that there is no supply of cash. Later, we operated only after the police intervened and dispersed the crowd,” a bank official said.