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Posted at: Jan 12, 2017, 2:02 AM; last updated: Jan 12, 2017, 2:02 AM (IST)

Currency ban: Cash blues continue in small towns

Currency ban: Cash blues continue in small towns
People wait to deposit and withdraw money at Punjab National Bank, Sham Churasi, near Hariana town of Hoshiarpur on Wednesday. Tribune Photo: Malkiat Singh

Sanjeev Singh Bariana

Tribune News Service

Hoshiarpur, January 11

As soon as the SBI branch in Hariana opened, a flood of customers made an attempt to enter the premises. The lone guard pushed people outside and put a lock on the gate allowing only a few inside.

Long queues outside several banks in semi-urban and small towns all over the district today contradicted the tall government claims of cash flow normalising after December 30.

People are not being given more than Rs 2,000 in cash at a number of bank branches at Hariana, Dasuya, Garhdiwala, Bullowal and Mahilpur, besides other small towns. Besides, none of the ATM machines are working here.

Saying the scene was the same in a majority of small townships in the state, a senior manager of a nationalised bank said, “We don’t get more than Rs 15 lakh for three days which is not sufficient to satisfy public demand.”

Cursing the staff inside the Punjab National Bank branch, Prayi Kaur, a resident of Khun Khun Kalan village, said, “The officials are not giving more than Rs 2,000 at one time. I have an important wedding in the family and don’t know how I will make purchases.”

A retired Havilder, Harjit Singh, standing in a queue at Dasuya, said, “I am 80-year old. I cannot stand for long hours. Every month I used to go in the first week and withdraw the amount which lasted me nearly a month. Besides, the staff is also not giving concessions to senior citizens.”

Ashu Gupta, staff at the State Bank of India, Mahilpur, said “We get less than Rs 10 lakh and many days, including tomorrow, we will not get any cash. It does get difficult.”

Manager of PNB, Hariana, Daljit Singh said, “Our staff is working under great pressure. Getting Rs 12 to 14 lakh every three days, we have no choice but to give just Rs 2,000 to a majority of customers so that we cover maximum number of them.”

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