New Delhi: Giving further relief to the depositors of crisis-ridden Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative (PMC) Bank, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Tuesday enhanced the withdrawal limit to Rs 50,000 from the earlier Rs 40,000.
The development comes as the depositors on Tuesday held a protest outside the National Stock Exchange office in Mumbai against Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. The protests erupted as the Finance Minister was present at the NSE building to attend an event.
The depositors gathered outside the NSE building just a day after another depositor of the fraud-ridden bank, Andrew Lobo, died after being unable to access his money on time for medical treatment.
On October 14, the RBI had increased the withdrawal limit to Rs 40,000 from the earlier amount of Rs 25,000. Notably, the RBI has hiked the withdrawal limit for the third time in October.
Due to the ill financial health of the bank, the central bank had imposed a limit of Rs 1,000 but later raised it to Rs 10,000 and then to Rs 25,000 in the wake of protests by the disgruntled customers.
Notably, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had earlier met RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das with regard to the PMC Bank withdrawal limit issue. “The RBI governor has assured me that he will keep the interest of customers in mind, and at the earliest try to resolve it…I had a discussion with RBI Governor this afternoon and I am closely monitoring it,” she had said.
Meanwhile, there were reports that account holders of the PMC Bank can withdraw money up to Rs 1 lakh within a six-month period in case of a medical emergency. As per the new norm, they can withdraw a sum of Rs 60,000 from the earlier limit of Rs 40,000 for the purpose of a medical emergency.
The PMC Bank came under the RBI scanner after an alleged fraud of Rs 4,355 crore scam emerged causing the Supreme Court to cap deposit withdrawals at Rs 1000. This resulted in immense panic and distress among depositors.
As per reports, the PMC bank had created over 21,000 fictitious accounts to hide bad loans extended to Housing Development and Infrastructure Limited, which is almost-bankrupt. The bank is also under-reported its NPAs to the RBI.
With a network of 137 branches, PMC Bank is a multi-state scheduled urban cooperative bank that operates in states such as Maharashtra, New Delhi, Karnataka, Goa, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, and Madhya Pradesh. One of the prominent commercial banks in India, the PMC Bank ranks among the top 10 cooperative banks in the country.