The fifth largest private sector lender Kotak Mahindra Bank has seen a five-times surge in the demand for cheque books post-demonetisation, a top official said on Thursday. “The demand for cheque books has gone up five times to the extent that the waiting period for getting a cheque book has dramatically gone up for us. The manufacturer is not able to cope with the demand,” bank’s executive vice-chairman Uday Kotak told reporters in Mumbai. The usage of cards and mobile banking have also gone up, he said, adding these are signs that the society is moving in towards less-cash economy faster.
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Kotak was speaking after announcing the bank’s support for a ‘National Blind Cricket Tournament’ to be held here next week with teams of differently-abled from eight states participating. The veteran banker said one of the biggest difficulties faced by banks at present is the high costs of acquiring and serving customers and added that his bank will be working to get the same down in 2017.
This will help in doing away with the impediment of serving small ticket size customers, he said. He said access to technological innovations and ease of using them is also very important and added that his bank has appointed an official in each of its branches exclusively for helping people with digital banking products.
Some experts say digital is the future of banking in a connected world and the note ban has exponentially increased its relevance as over 86 per cent of the currency in a predominantly cash-based economy got wiped out. Terming its support for the differently-abled as an effort towards better inclusion, Kotak said his bank feels there is a need to change the tone of the word inclusion and digital technologies are aiding the same.