An 80-year-old farmer died inside a bank in Uttar Pradesh after an argument with authorities who gave him less than half the money he needed to withdraw for his medical treatment, his family said on Friday.
Baladeen and his son, Rajesh Kumar, travelled to the Allahabad Bank in Mahoba district for four consecutive days and queued up for hours before reaching the money counter on Thursday.
They lived in Saragpura village, about seven kilometers from the bank.
“My father wasn’t keeping well, we needed the money badly for his heart treatment,” said Rajesh.
But the authorities gave him only Rs 6,000 and not the Rs 14,000 he needed.
“I filled the withdrawal slip for Rs 14,000 but the clerk gave us Rs 6,000. I told him about my father’s condition and my father pleaded with him but he was unrelenting,” said Rajesh.
Baladeen then had an argument with bank employees, who expressed their helplessness and asked him to come back and withdraw the rest of the amount the following week.
But during the tiff, Baladeen suddenly complained of severe chest pain and slumped on the floor, his son said. He then died inside the bank.
His death enraged people inside the bank who began shouting slogans and demanding the arrest of the bank employees.
As trouble mounted, police reached the bank and dispersed the crowd before sending the body for a post-mortem.
Gaurav Singh, superintendent of police in Mahoba, said local police were looking into the complaint.
This is the latest in a string of deaths connected to the government’s shock recall of RS 500 and Rs 1000 notes that has triggered a severe cash crunch, especially in the countryside. Opposition parties have blamed Prime Minister Narendra Modi of not doing enough to alleviate cash distress in rural areas, where the agrarian economy is said to have been ravaged by the demonetisation move.