After the government’s move to demonetise old higher denomination notes to clamp down on black money, the country is facing a cash crunch as people are still queuing up outside banks and ATMs to keep up with the policy changes. As the government attempts to make currency available to all sections of the society, there have been reports of few branch officials indulging in fraudulent practices while exchanging specified bank notes in cash, according to a statement issued by the Reserve Bank of India. In order to stop the officials to partake in such activities RBI has advised banks to take stern action against anyone found using unfair means to exchange notes.
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“Banks are advised to ensure that such fraudulent practices are stopped forthwith through enhanced vigilance and take stern action against officials involved in such activities,” RBI said.
RBI has ordered banks to ensure strict compliance of instructions issued by it for the exchange of specified bank notes (Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes) and also to deposit these notes in the customer accounts. The banks are also asked to maintain a detailed list of denomination wise notes and the total value of the discontinued notes deposited in each account from November 9, 2016.
Two weeks since implementation of the new policy, people are still facing problems in exchanging old currency notes with new ones. On one hand the government has eased caps on account withdrawals, on the other hand it has tightened rules for currency exchange.
The original ceiling placed at Rs 4,000 on exchange of old currency was raised to Rs 4,500 within five days. The government also decided to use indelible ink, which is used during elections, to prevent people to exchange currency multiple times.
As per the Reserve Bank of India’s data, banks disbursed Rs 1.03 lakh crore over the counter and via ATMs between November 10 and November 18, as against exchange and deposits of over Rs 5.44 lakh crore worth of scrapped Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes at different banks till November 18. The government has put a limit of Rs 24,000 per week per person in withdrawal from bank account.