“Chhutta kahan se laayein (Where do we get change from?)” — that’s the sentiment all over ever since PM Narendra Modi banned Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes to curb the flow of black money in market. There’s one section that has surely been hit hard — college-goers. Students cry foul, saying they have gone kangaal (bankrupt) as they anyway live on meagre pocket money.
With ATMs not functional and little cash in their wallets, some skipped breakfast, while others skipped classes just to avoid spending on travel.
“I withdrew Rs 1,200 from the ATM that morning and raat mein notes ban ho gaye. The Rs 1,000 note is practically useless, so I skipped college today and am saving Rs 200 for emergency,” says Mayank Garg, a second-year student of Shri Guru Nanak Dev khalsa.
Hostellers say their situation is worse. Shahnaz Parveen of Miranda House rues, “My friends went to buy biscuits in the morning and came back empty handed. Hostel mein hamesha khaana toh milta nahi hai. What do we do now?”
What’s Delhi without jugaad?
Some roadside stall owners in the city are making a quick buck by offering a change of Rs 450 for a Rs 500 note, but students aren’t happy about the money lost. “As a student, I can’t afford a loss of Rs 50 but what else can we do?” says Mahesh Kumar, a second year student of Ramjas College. Several other Delhiites, however, don’t mind the deal after all.
Here’s more. Vendors in Janpath have an offer Delhi girls might find hard to turn down. You can buy five tops with a Rs 500 note. If food is what you crave, some food van and cart owners are offering khulla (change), but only on orders above Rs 100. City salons, restaurants and gyms, too, advertised offers, but mostly lasting a day or two.
Input by Khushboo Shukla and Nikita Sachdev