Pay day: Huge lines across the country, but not a lot of money to withdraw

Demonetisation: While many branches are yet to get the new Rs 500 notes, notes of Rs 100 are in short supply and people are reluctant to accept Rs 2,000 notes.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: December 1, 2016 1:47 pm
Senior citizens stand in a queue outside an SBI branch to exchange old notes in Amritsar. (PTI Photo)

With pay day having arrived and salaries expected to be disbursed to employees in firms across the country and by the government to its staff, banks and ATMs are facing massive crowds in the wake of demonetisation of old Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes. According to the Reserve Bank’s order, a person can withdraw Rs 24,000 against a withdrawal slip or cheque subject per week, including ATM and bank withdrawals. However, the shortage of cash has forced banks to cap the withdrawal limit as per their fund availability to cater to maximum customers. While many branches are yet to get the new Rs 500 notes, notes of Rs 100 are in short supply and people are reluctant to accept Rs 2,000 notes.

WATCH VIDEO: Petrol Pumps, Air Ticket Counters Will Not Accept Old Rs 500 Notes After December 2

Several banks and ATMs in Delhi have been shut or are lying defunct because of cash shortage and technical issues for the past few days. Kolkata saw long queues on Wednesday itself, even as people tried to avoid the pay day rush. The rush for cash on Wednesday hit boiling point, giving the West Bengal government and police a preview for what may happen on Thursday. In Gujarat, the union of state government employees had demanded that the state government pay the salaries of employees for the month of November in cash. But salaries of employees will be done as per regular practice of depositing the same in their bank accounts.

With many bank branches getting half of the cash required, on a daily basis, unions had earlier asked Indian Banks’ Association to advise banks to ask for police protection in branches to provide proper security to the staff.

HIGHLIGHTS

Vishnu Varma December 1, 201612:16 pm

Long queues are being reported outside Canara Bank in Chittaranjan Park, South Delhi. Some people have been standing for over 3 hours. The bank has now temporarily shut its doors to control the crowd.

Vishnu Varma December 1, 201611:30 am

Senior journalist Rajdeep Sardesai recounts his experiences at bank branches in Delhi where people are queuing up to withdraw money on pay day.

Vishnu Varma December 1, 201610:53 am

The meeting of the opposition leaders in Parliament has ended. The winter session, that started on Nov 16, has not been able to transact any major business as both Houses saw repeated adjournments on the issues of demonetisation and the Nagrota terror attack. It will be interesting to see what strategy the opposition will use to force a debate on the issue.

Nandagopal Rajan December 1, 201610:50 am
Opposition in action

Nandagopal Rajan December 1, 201610:41 am

Old Rs 500 notes to be accepted at petrol pumps and for airline tickets only till tomorrow. The earlier announced date was December 15.

Aaron Pereira December 1, 201610:15 am

Aaron Pereira December 1, 201610:13 am

Villagers at Bilaspur, Greater Noida, have blocked the Noida-Sikandrabad road, affecting traffic for more than an hour. This, reportedly after banks at Mandi Shyam Nagar in Dankaur displayed a ‘no cash’ notice. When villagers reached the banks to withdraw money, they were left agitated.

Locals said the villagers then closed the banks’ gates from outside and held a protest even as some of them blocked traffic on the Noida-Sikandrabad road.

Aaron Pereira December 1, 201610:10 am

Police presence at bank branches across the country will be heightened given that the next few days will see a heavy rush of people queuing to collect their salaries.

The rush at bank counters will be much higher as the withdrawal limit from ATMs continues to remain at Rs 2500/day — an amount that will not suffice given that the first week of the month is when most payments are to be made.

Aaron Pereira December 1, 20169:55 am

Sources have told The Indian Express that the RBI has made adequate arrangements for pay day and there will be extra cash flow over the next few days.

“From Wednesday evening there will be excess release of cash for five-six days,” the source said.

Aaron Pereira December 1, 20169:51 am

In East Delhi, people have started queuing up waiting for bank operations to start. Notice says preference to customers of bank.