BHUBANESWAR: Fearing heavy rush of customers in bank branches for exchange of currency notes of `500 and `1,000, the State Government on Wednesday directed districts to provide adequate security for their smooth functioning.
As banks and ATMs will open from Thursday after withdrawal of the legal tender status of `500 and `1,000 denominations, the State level bankers’ committee is reported to have sought adequate security from the Government at bank branches and ATM counters.
Chief Secretary AP Padhi, who discussed the issue with district Collectors through video conference here, appealed to the people not to panic and advised the Collectors to create awareness among them by providing all necessary information including availability of new denominations of `500 and `2000 notes.
Finance Secretary TK Pandey said banks and ATMs will be functional from Thursday and one can withdraw up to a `2,000 per card per day up to November 18. The limit will be raised to `4,000 per day per card then onwards.
For immediate cash needs, one can exchange these notes of value up to `4,000 per person for cash over the counter of these bank branches. However, there is no limit for deposits.
Even cash withdrawal through cheque/withdrawal slips is subject to a ceiling of `10,000 in a day within an overall limit of `20,000 in a week for the first fortnight up to November 24. All banks will remain open on November 12 (Saturday) and 13 (Sunday), he added.
Banks have been urged to keep adequate amount of `100 notes to meet the demand.
Director General of Police (DGP) KB Singh said SPs across the districts have been instructed to make arrangements for security at banks which are expected to report rush in view of exchange of the old tenders.
‘’We have also asked the banks to open additional counters to tackle the rush. Post offices have also been requested to make necessary arrangements to ease the additional pressure,’’ Singh said adding, police will keep a watch on ATMs, petrol pumps, hospitals and market complexes.
Singh said districts have also been asked to provide special security arrangements for banks as new tenders will be supplied from RBI to local head offices of banks and then to branches in different parts of the State.
‘’There will be heavy flow of cash during next few days and we will keep a watch,’’ he added.
Police Commissioner YB Khurania said additional arrangements have been made in the Twin City since major PSU banks like SBI are expected to witness heavy rush during next few days. The ATMs, petrol pumps and other shopping complexes will be watched by police during mobile patrolling.
Meanwhile, the toll gates at National Highways witnessed huge rush with toll plaza officials refusing to accept tenders of `500 and `1,000 denomination.
At the toll gates, vehicles were stranded on either sides for about an hour as processing took time. Later, the Centre suspended collection of toll till November 11.