City hits ‘note’ of panic - Chaos continues as ATMs, banks run out of cash
The supply of money in many banks got exhausted afternoon with the authorities requesting customers to come late in the afternoon or on Saturday.
The situation has turned from bad to worse in the districts with the bank authorities unable to tell the customers as to when the refill would come.
In Kolkata, people started queuing up in front of the ATM counters of private and nationalised banks since early morning.
Most of the ATM counters of private banks did not open and the security personnel in order to avoid untoward incidents requested those standing in the queues with folded hands that they had no information as to why the ATM counters were closed.
In most of the ATM counters run by the nationalised banks, people could not withdraw money due to link failure. Also, most of the nationalised banks refused to entertain cards of other banks at the ATM counters. In BBD Bag, Sealdah, Howrah, Maniktala and Sector V in Salt Lake, long queues were seen outside the ATM counters.
Manik Chatterjee a resident of Hooghly finally withdrew Rs 2,000 from the ATM counter at BBD Bag after he found two of the private banks with whom he has accounts closing the counters. “Who will pay for our harassment? I went to two ATM counters and after waiting in the queue for over an hour I could withdraw Rs 2000,” he said.
Subhasis Bose, came to know that the ATM counter of the private bank with whom he has account will not open after waiting for two hours. “I came to the ATM counter at 9 am, one hour before the banking hour starts and at 11 am, I am told by the security personnel that it will not open”.
Manidipa Chatterjee, a resident of Lalgola in Murshidabad who has an account with a nationalised bank said her mother in law was terminally ill and for her, she has to keep cash in home. “The ATM counter is closed and I could not withdraw money as there is no supply of new notes. RBI should have improved the infrastructure before announcing such a decision.”
Senior bank officials said the situation would take another five to six days to become normal. “There is shortage of Rs 100 notes and those who received Rs 2,000 notes are not getting changes”.