Even as the rush for cash eased off across the tricity on Saturday in the wake of the recall of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 banknotes, residents now are facing yet another challenge — lack of change to buy goods of daily need as there is an acute shortage of smaller denomination currency in the market.
Shikha Sharma, a resident of Phase 2 in SAS Nagar, said, “I was standing in the queue to withdraw cash but when I saw that Rs 2,000 were being dispensed, I preferred not to enter the ATM (automated teller machine) thinking how will I arrange change. Whenever I go to the market they ask for notes of smaller denomination. In case you do not have it you are forced to buy goods of whatever amount you hand over to the vendor,”
Food, juice vendors face the hit in Panchkula
In Sectors 10 and 11 of Panchkula, food and juice stalls that used to do brisk business till recently are not getting as many customers anymore.
“Employees working in the offices used to come to have lunch at our stalls but a few show up now. Many people came with Rs 2,000 banknotes today but we had to turn them away,” said Rajinder Prasad, who sells paranthas and chhole rice.
“There is not much change available in the market. Either we refuse e customers or ask them to pay later on. No one will buy fruits of Rs 2,000 even if I ask them to,” said Vinod Kumar, a fruit vendor in Phase 10.
“You can withdraw Rs 2,500 a day from ATM. So I try to withdraw smaller amounts so that I get notes of smaller denomination or buy goods from shops to get change,” said Rupinder Singh of Phase 10 in SAS Nagar.
A panipuri vendor in Panchkula said, “I have to ask people if they have change before selling them anything.”
The situation is no different for juice-vendors. Sanjay Kumar, who runs a rehri near banks in Sector 11 of the city, said, “I have to say no if people don’t have `100 notes. There’s no way I can get change for Rs 2,000 for a Rs 40 glass of juice.”
Ice-cream parlour accepting cheques
Icecream.com, an ice-cream parlour and general store in Sector 10, Panchkula, is now accepting payment by cheque. Ravi Tiwari, the shop owner, spent Rs 25,000 to get an LED board that reads ‘credit and debit cards accepted’. “Our earnings have dropped from Rs 15,000-20,000 to Rs 5,000-6,000. People don’t have cash and we are feeling the heat,” he said.