The rush outside banks and ATMs reduced on Friday as most banks ran out of cash. As on Thursday evening, all six banks with currency chests in Gurgaon reported zero balance and the situation did not change on Friday.
Bankers, however, said the shorter lines were the result of reduction in exchange limit of notes to ₹2,000. Till Thursday, people could exchange the demonetised ₹1,000 and ₹500 notes adding up to ₹4,500 for new currency notes.
At ICICI bank branch in Qutub Plaza market, people who had queued up for withdrawal and exchange of notes since early morning were a disappointed lot as the bank announced it had no cash left. Only those consumers who wanted to deposit money were allowed inside.
“I came around 8 am and at 11 pm, I am told that there is no cash. They say the cash will reach after 1 am,” Saurabh Gupta, a customer, said.
The scene was by and large similar at all branches across the city. Majority of ATMs wore a deserted look with notices of “no cash” pasted outside the kiosks. Similar notices were put up outside several bank branches too.
Gaurav Saigal who was outside a branch of HDFC bank at a shopping mall in DLF Phase 1 said after a long wait, the bank informed him that there was no cash. Branches of Vijaya Bank, ICICI Bank, Indus Ind Bank and Jammu and Kashmir bank in the same mall ran were also out of cash.
The State Bank of India, however, was an exception with a reported cash reserve of ₹6.5 crore.
The six banks with currency chests in Gurgaon reported that they dispensed ₹657.36 crore through their 239 branches till Thursday evening. However, they received only ₹71 crore from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) since November 9. The banks managed the rest of the amount from reserves in their currency chests and other banks.
Ramesh Chandra Nayak, lead district manager, Gurgaon, said the banks in Gurgaon district have dispensed about ₹4,000 crore since November 9 but the supply from the RBI was insufficient. There is a need of at least ₹1,000 crore every second day to meet the increased currency demand after the scrapping of ₹500 and ₹1,000 notes, he said.
“We have written to the RBI and other authorities to supply additional currency to Gurgaon where demand for cash is more than other Haryana districts,” Nayak said.
Gurgaon has 715 bank branches. Currency chests of six banks with 239 branches have a cash holding capacity of ₹3,213 crore and they require ₹650 crore currency on every second and third day. Rest of the 476 bank branches also need approximately ₹10 crore each per day.
Fuel station at Pataudi road dispenses cash
Boxer petrol pump of Hindustan Petroleum at Gadoli village on Pataudi road and Geeta Fuels of Indian Oil Corporation on old Delhi-Gurgaon road started dispensing cash on Friday. “I received ₹1 lakh in ₹100 denomination from a bank and dispensed about ₹50,000 by evening (Friday). People rushed for cash as soon as they heard about the facility,” Raj Kumar Sangwan, owner of Boxer fuel station, said.
The government on Thursday announced that cash could be withdrawn using debit cards at 2,500 selected petrol pumps across the country. The facility will be extended to 20,000 fuel stations that have card swipe machines of the SBI and some other leading private banks.