Situation was no better in West Bengal, though there were

Situation was no better in West Bengal, though there were
expectations that the cash availability may improve soon after new notes start arriving from Salboni printing press in West Midnapore district.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee alleged that West Bengal and some other states were being discriminated against in the process of distribution of new currency notes and demanded that the RBI come out with state-wide “figures” for disbursement of cash.
Across the country, people thronged the branches as central and state governments, as also private enterprises, credited salaries to their employees. At the central level alone, there are around 50 lakh employees and 58 lakh pensioners.
Bankers said the government’s move last week to provide Rs 10,000 in advance to non-gazetted staff have not provided any relief.
Many banks made ‘SOS calls’ to RBI for additional cash for the first few days of December to meet the initial rush of people, already fatigued standing in unending queues to exchange/deposit old notes and make limited withdrawals over the past three weeks after the demonetisation was announced on November 8.
RBI Governor Urjit Patel had said on Sunday that the central bank 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.
In Gujarat also, banks began regulating supply of cash to their customers to meet the heavy demand amid a paucity of funds, while a number of ATMs remained inoperative.
Similar was the case in neighbouring Maharashtra, including in cosmopolitan Mumbai and its suburbs.
Kerala unit of All India Bank Employees Association said bank branches were under extreme pressure as the existing stock of currencies with them may not be sufficient to meet the needs of customers due to pension and salary disbursement.
This will lead to an ‘explosive situation’, the association said in a statement.
Unless the RBI urgently supplied sufficient quantity of currency notes, especially of low denomination, to all the banks, bank employees would be exposed to the wrath of customers for no fault of theirs, it said.
Bank customers complained of harassment and inconvenience at various places in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh as well, even as banks maintained they have made adequate arrangements to deal with the heavy rush.
Punjab Bank Employees Federation Secretary Naresh Gaur said, “We appeal to the RBI to make available sufficient cash as soon as possible to banks otherwise the situation will turn worse.” PTI TEAM DP