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Banks reopen after 2-day break, cash worries refuse to go away

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

branches across the country today reopened to very short queues after a two-day break even as there were reports of shortage at some locations.

The Opposition observed Jan Aakrosh Diwas to protest against the move and the Left-dominated and went for Bandh, affecting services in these two states.

However, banks across the country stuck to normal hours. Many ATMs are still running dry despite recalibration of more than 60 per cent of such cash-dispensing machines.

Nearly 20 days after the Prime Minister announced cancellation of legal tender of old Rs 500/1,000 currency notes, small traders, truckers and construction workers are up against hardships in going about their business.

Due to sowing of rabi crop, the focus of the has now shifted to rural areas, which means urban centres are feeling the squeeze.

Sources said funds are being made available in rural and semi-urban pockets so that farmers get adequate for sowing rabi crop.

There are also reports that banks in major metros are getting less than their requirement leading to chaos at the branches.

Yesterday, RBI Governor Urjit Patel had said the central is monitoring the situation on a daily basis and taking all necessary actions to "ease the genuine pain of citizens" with a clear intent to normalise the things as early as possible.

"The situation arising out of the decision to withdraw Rs 500/1,000 notes is being monitored on a daily basis and the printing presses have started to rebalance the production of new notes towards Rs 100 and Rs 500 bills," he had said.

He also urged people to start using substitutes like debit cards and digital wallets, saying it will make transactions cheaper and easier and in the long term, it will help India "leapfrog into a less use economy at par with more developed nations".

As part of efforts to improve convenience for people at branches, the decided to stop exchange facility, a welcome relief for customers and bankers as well.

Last week, the stopped over-the-counter exchange of the defunct Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, November 28 2016. 20:58 IST