Bank officials have harrowing time handling crowds queueing up
The bank officials were on their toes on Thursday while handling the crowd that occurred at branches a day after demonitisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes. Almost all the branches of various banks witnessed serpentine queues since opening hours as people started gathering there as early as 6 am. The banks had accounted to extend working hours but several banks exhausted cash by the afternoon and were forced to shut down.
“We have exhausted all the cash we had today, you all please come tomorrow (Friday),” said Branch Manager of Canara Bank at 3.30 pm to the crowd. However, there was no limit for cash deposits but the manager declared to stop cash deposits as well. “We have already taken five times more cash than our daily appetite. As per rules of the reserve we are bound to receive a particular amount of cash daily, we relaxed it today (Thursday) but we can’t accommodate more,” added the manager trying to pacify the crowd.
Huge crowds were there at various banks at Delhi Gate area in Daryagunj, and Rapid Action Force (RAF) personnel were also present to assist Delhi Police. There are several banks on the roads and situation was almost the same everywhere. People got angry as banks were demanding ‘authorisation letter’ from the account holder in case the depositor was not the account holder with the banks. Similarly, the compulsory forms required for change of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes were also a cause of worry for the customers. “We are required to fill forms and then attach photocopies of our identity proofs and stand in queue for hours. It’s pathetic,” said Shah Bano, who had come to get a change of Rs 2,000.
It was alleged that the banks were allowing customers having their accounts in the branch. As ATMs were not open on Thursday, banks were the only hope for the customers seeking currency of lesser denominations and came out to deposit old notes in their accounts. “I had to skip my office and come for the currency exchange. Bank officials are cooperating and helping us. The new notes are really good but I hope that I find change for Rs 2,000 now, said Dheeraj Sharma, a customer in Noida. The market too remained a bit low. “The customer received a new note after so many attempts but the problem remained in the market with a severe shortage of change,” said a footwear shopkeeper in Gurgaon.