Cash crunch continues to haunt common man

Despite relief steps, no respite

Hyderabad: Time bar on exchange of old notes has reduced the rush at banks much to the relief of the harassed staff, but the sufferings and agony of the common man for want of required cash continued to persist.

Cash-starved people were seen waiting in queues at the banks, though not for exchanging old notes but for depositing them. However, their number at the banks was far less when compared to the serpentine queues which was the order of the day till now. But the queues were still there at many banks as people desperately tried to withdraw the needed cash for their daily needs and to buy the essential commodities. However, many of them were forced to return empty handed as the banks declared “out of cash” after some time or refused to disburse the required amount except a paltry amount of Rs 2000.

Many account holders in banks having enough cash deposits were bluntly told that they could draw only 2000 rupees though the Central government had declared and fixed Rs 24,000 as the limit of withdrawals from bank accounts per week. When asked about this, the bank officials’ answer was “there was not enough cash available with the bank”.

The continuous closure of ATMs all over Telangana has further increased the hardships of the people. While a miniscule of the ATMs functioned, the cash available was meager. Though the government made it amply clear that the old 500 rupee notes could be used for public utility services like payment of water, electricity and telephone bills, those who went to make use of these old notes encountered problems with the staff refusing to accept them.

When a senior journalist went to the BSNL customer care centre at Jubilee Hills for payment of telephone bill, the staff refused to accept the old 500 rupee note. On being reminded that the Telephone Department has declared that the bills could be paid with old 500 rupee notes while sending reminders on telephone, the staff expressed ignorance. What is more, when the new 2000 rupee note was given for clearing the bill, the staff said they did not have the change and wanted that either correct bill amount be paid or allowed to adjust the balance amount in the next bill.

Similar experiences galore at many places with people narrating their tales of woes not only to get required cash from their bank accounts but also in the payment of bills for utility services with the new big notes. While the government employees are keeping their fingers crossed as the pay day is nearing, private sector employees are spending sleepless nights not knowing whether they would get paid.

-NSS

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