The enormous cash crunch continues to cause more pain to people as shortage of cash forced banks to ration withdrawals and down shutters early as the supply of notes failed to keep up with the increasing demand.
According to a Times of India report, several bank branches in Mumbai ran out of currency notes, including Rs 2,000 ones, within a few hours of opening for business on Tuesday, the first day of the pay day week.
The report further claimed that most private banks in the financial capital received around Rs 20 crore, much below their daily cash requirement.
Meanwhile, bankers said that although customers are entitled to withdraw up to Rs 24,000, branch managers are using their discretion and rationing payouts in order to avoid shutting down their cash counters early.
Pensioners and employees, who will hoard at bank branches during the pay week, are expected to suffer because of inefficient supply of cash to bank branches, dry AMTs and shortage of new Rs 500 notes.
While the government claims that there is enough cash to meet the demand, bank branches have a different narrative.
In Kolkata, the footfall in bank branches during the salary week doubles and the situation of cash crisis here is similar to other cities across the country.
“We are already experiencing the rush as some private companies have credited salary. We're giving full cash to branch customers as per RBI guidelines but it's not possible to provide full cash to non-branch customers,” as SBI branch manager in south Kolkata was quoted by Times of India as saying.
“We are asking for more cash but not getting it. In the last two weeks, we have got only 25% of what we asked. The supply of Rs 500 notes is minuscule. We are not getting Rs 500 notes and it ismostly going to ATMs,” he added.
A public sector bank branch in Bengaluru’s MG Road said that 99 per cent of the customers asking for lower denomination currency are returning without cash.
Similarly, state-run banks in Delhi are pulling out all stops to ensure they are able to cope with the salary rush.
“We have rolled out micro ATMs at government offices. We have put up 10 counters at New Delhi Metro station and our mobile ATMs are placed in busy areas and near government offices,” said a senior Punjab National Bank official.