The stoppage of over-the-counter exchange of scrapped currency notes had a mixed effect in Tamil Nadu on Friday with more people queuing up in front of ATMs amid continuing cash crunch, while the rush eased out at banks much to the relief of their employees.
With a number of ATMs remaining non-operational or running out of cash, long queues could be seen in front of functioning ATMs at many places even as the cash crunch persisted.
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On the other hand, time spent at banks by customers has started coming down with faster transactions compared to the immediate aftermath of the demonetisation. “I am here to deposit the cash in my accounts. Actually, the time taken for making a transaction has decreased compared to last fortnight when people stood in queues to exchange cash. Now, the queue is moving fast,” a customer at an Indian Bank branch here said.
A bank official said that following the stopping of exchange of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes at bank counters, the situation has eased and employees were able to take up other banking services.
“Earlier, the other banking operations had taken a hit as most of the employees were engaged in exchange of currencies or accepting cash from customers. Now, the burden has come down a bit,” a bank official told PTI.
Echoing similar views, All India Bank Employees Union (AIBEU) General Secretary C H Venkatachalam said the workload of employees, who had been working almost 12 hours a day, has come down.
“One way it has eased out the situation. But, the demand has been increasing as there is short supply. That is why you can see still people standing in queues at ATMs”, he told PTI.
Government needs to step up the supply as there was a huge demand which results into ATMs going dry within a few hours of being replenished, he said.
Responding to a query on whether ATMs of private sector banks were dispensing new Rs 2,000 and Rs 100 notes much ahead of nationalised banks, he said the association was aware of the issue and discussing it.
“We too received such allegations. We do not know whether new generation banks received the cash ahead of public sector banks. All we want is that RBI should bring in transparency in disbursal of cash to banks,” he said.
In its latest announcement yesterday, the government has said there will be no over-the-counter exchange of the old notes after midnight though people can still get them changed at Reserve Bank of India offices.
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