The country's largest lender SBI will limit cash withdrawals from ATMs to Rs 20,000 per day for certain card holders from October 31, according to a communication. The limit will be applicable on the Classic and Maestro variants of SBI debit cards, while those who want to withdraw more can apply for a higher variant card.
"Daily cash withdrawal limit for Classic and Maestro debit cards has been reduced from Rs 40,000 to Rs 20,000 per day with effect from October 31. If you require higher daily cash withdrawal limit, please apply for a higher card variant," SBI said in an information for debit card holders on its website.
SBI Managing Director PK Gupta told PTI that the move intends to protect customers from fraudulent cash withdrawals from ATMs and also to spur more digital transactions.
"We analysed all the ATM transactions and we found that most of them are less than Rs 20,000 a day. In case of frauds reported to us, we found that in all such cases withdrawals of Rs 40,000 (the maximum) have happened. So this is basically to protect the customers and secondly, we want that more such (digital) transactions should happen," Gupta said.
If any customer wants higher limit of cash withdrawal, he or she can ask for a higher variant card.
When asked why the reduction comes ahead of the festive season, Gupta said the option is always open to visit a branch to draw more cash and besides there are many digital means through which people make their transactions these days.
"Let us see if customers can do more transactions through digital means also, there are so many digital payment mechanisms available," Gupta said.
When asked how many such customers/cards are to be impacted due to this reduced limit, he said a very large number of customers fall into this category.
However, the bank has lots of customers with higher variant debit card, so they are not impacted.