Serpentine queues make a comeback as banks open after three days

People were also seen rushing to banks till the closing time, requesting the officials to facilitate the withdrawals in cash.

Published: 14th December 2016 04:54 AM  |   Last Updated: 14th December 2016 04:54 AM   |  A+A-

Customers waiting for their turns in the long queue at the ATM of Indian Bank near the railway station in Visakhapatnam on Tuesday. Of the 33 ATMs checked by Express on Tuesday evening, only seven dis

By Express News Service

VISAKHAPATNAM : Citizens thronged the counters as banks  opened on Tuesday after the three-day  consecutive holiday. Serpentine queues at ATMs also made a comeback as the ATMs were replenished.
Meanwhile, there is no material change in the situation in Visakhapatnam as many ATMs did not function. 

However, long queues were seen at the functioning ATMs right from the morning. Majority of the people preferred to withdraw money from bank counters as they wanted lump sum amounts. People were also seen rushing to banks till the closing time, requesting the officials to facilitate the withdrawals in cash.  Police personnel were deployed at major branches to prevent any untoward situation. 

To check the ground reality, Express checked 33 ATMs in several areas in the evening, of which only seven dispensed cash. Most of the functioning ATMs dispensed only Rs 2,000 notes. 
Bankers were seen clearing pending works. Many customers came to the banks to withdraw the maximum limit of Rs 24,000 per week at one go to avoid visiting the banks again. 

The Indian Overseas Bank at Akkayapalem registered only an average rush. “We have cleared pensions for almost all the pensioners, while a few who have only Rs 1,000 as pension are yet to get it. Over Rs 37 lakh was deposited by the customers on Tuesday,  including the old notes. Observing the difficult situation the customers are facing, we are giving them Rs 500, Rs 2,000 and Rs 100 notes. In the two ATMs, we have loaded Rs 4 lakh each twice in the day, including Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 notes,” said the chief manager of Andhra Bank, Akkayapalem, M Sudheer Babu. 

“We have received Rs 130 crore for Vizag district, majority of the cash is in the Rs 2,000 notes,” D Sarat Babu, the Lead Bank Manager said.   

“We are still to pay house rents and clear other monthly bills. Even the house owners are not accepting cheques, they want only cash. We are forced to stand in the queue in the banks to withdraw cash and later get change to pay rents and  meet other expenses,” says M Vasu, a private employee. 

Many people are still finding it difficult to manage with Rs 2,000 notes. “All the ATMs have only Rs 2,000 notes. We do not know from where to get change every time we withdraw cash from the banks,” says S Rammurthy, a teacher of a private school.  

In Srikakulam too, people thronged the banks including ATMs since morning on Tuesday. The district received Rs 113.50 crore from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Saturday. 

The bank authorities allocated Rs 20 crore in lower denominations for disbursal of social security pensions. 

Despite the banks officials replenishing the cash in ATMs, they ran out in no time.

“I visited four ATMS to withdraw cash in the morning. But, no luck. The three SBI ATMs on the Palakonda Road and at Rythu Bazaar were out of service,” said Sankara Rao, a grocery shop owner from Nanubala Veedhi of Srikakulam. “We have allocated Rs 40 crore to the SBI, while the rest Rs 73.5 crore have been distributed among other banks,” said lead bank manager P Venkateswara Rao.

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