Truckers body AIMTC on Saturday demanded increasing the cash withdrawal limit to Rs 20,000 per day in view of inconvenience caused to drivers. All India Motor Transport Congress (AIMTC), which represents 93 lakh truckers said acute financial crunch has impacted movement of trucks and supply of essential items. AIMTC President, Bhim Wadhwa told PTI that they have appealed to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to enhance cash withdrawal limits as drivers across India were facing problems. Wadhwa said 80 per cent of the transport operations are cash based which implies that Rs 1,194 crore is required on a daily basis by the sector to meet its operations costs.
The government demonetised 1,000 and 500 currency notes from the midnight of November 8 with the aim to fight black money and corruption, while exempting a few emergency services like hospitals, petrol pumps, railways and airports for 72 hours, which days up to November 11. This list was later expanded to include payments for metro rail tickets, highway and road toll, purchase of medicines on doctor prescription from the government and private pharmacies, LPG gas cylinders, railway catering, electricity and water bills and ASI monument entry tickets.
The time limit was to expire mid-night on Friday, but it has now been extended by another 72 hours. Banks and ATMs on weekend witnessed more chaos and even longer queues as cash-starved people jostled to exchange and withdraw money, even as cash dispensing machines went dry soon after they were stocked due to heavy rush. Long serpentine queues were witnessed at bank branches for the third straight day across the country. Similarly, people were seen impatiently waiting outside ATMs to withdraw money.