Demonetisation spawns note ban of a different kind in Barmer
For the past one week, the public sector bank’s branches have been turning away people coming to deposit small currencies – Rs 10, Rs 20, Rs 50 and Rs 100 – because the vaults have no space to store them.jaipur Updated: Jul 06, 2017 20:36 IST
While the effects of demonetisation, in largely economic terms, still remains to unfold for the rest of the country, for the residents of Barmer, the November 2016 upheaval caused by the banning of currencies has come back in a new avatar. Account holders of State Bank of India in this western district of Rajasthan are slowly coming to terms with the novel realisation that their money-keepers, with their immeasurable amount of space, can run out of precisely that — space.
For the past one week, the public sector bank’s branches have been turning away people coming to deposit small currencies – Rs 10, Rs 20, Rs 50 and Rs 100 – because the vaults have no space to store them. The reason: they are filled with the Rs 500 and Rs 1000 denomination currency notes that people had deposited after Prime Minister Narendra Modi made that announcement on the November 8 evening last year.
As Bakhtawar Singh, the manager of currency chest, Barmer, SBI, confirms the stance being taken by the branches, he says the Reserve Bank of India, which was supposed to collect the demonetised notes, was yet to do so.
According to him, old currencies totalling about Rs 1500 crore are stored in the vaults at these brances, leaving little to none space for any more notes.
An order directing the branches not to accept small currency notes was issued on July 1, after several failed requests to the RBI to collect the old notes.
Singh said the bank was left with “no other option” but to go for this “temporary solution” which will slowly expand to other banks if the central bank does not pay immediate heed to their plea.
Incidentally, officials from some of the other banks, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said they have started resorting the SBI’s measure to avoid “meeting the similar situation of lack of storage space”. People, at present, can deposit the new currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 2,000.
Ashok Geegal, lead bank manager in Barmer, said a fresh request has been sent out to the RBI to collect the demonetised notes at the earliest.