Post offices open new accounts as banks busy handling cash rush in Ludhiana | punjab$ludhiana | Hindustan Times
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Post offices open new accounts as banks busy handling cash rush in Ludhiana

While banks are yet to entertain requests for opening of new savings account as they are occupied with post demonetisation currency crunch, post offices have already commenced this service. For 49- year-old Beegan Lal, a migrant labourer from Bihar’s Patna, this Thursday was the first time ever that he opened a savings account at the head post office of the city.

punjab Updated: Nov 18, 2016 17:18 IST
Rameshinder Singh Sandhu
People waiting for their turn outside the bank in Ludhiana on Thursday.
People waiting for their turn outside the bank in Ludhiana on Thursday. (Gurminder Singh/HT)

While banks are yet to entertain requests for opening of new savings account as they are occupied with post demonetisation currency crunch, post offices have already commenced this service. For 49- year-old Beegan Lal, a migrant labourer from Bihar’s Patna, this Thursday was the first time ever that he opened a savings account at the head post office of the city.

All thanks to demonetisation that left him with no other option and interestingly like Lal, there are many others who have been visiting post offices over the last few days to avail this service.

Officials from the postal department shared that since the last few days, 10-12 new accounts are being opened daily at almost every post office of the city and majority of these accounts are being opened by those who have never had a bank account .

“We are getting a huge response for new savings account following discontinuation of `500 and `1,000 banknotes, but it is exciting to note that for most of these, it’s their first saving account. They are also curious to know about various services pertaining to the account and we have dedicated desks to clarify their doubts,”shared SC Pahwa, senior post master from head post office.

He added, “There are about 43 post offices in the city and a total of 2,84,000 accounts but considering daily addition of fresh accounts in every post office, this number will drastically jump in the coming days. In other words, it is also a good sign that people seem to have understood the importance of having a savings account.”

For opening a savings account at the post office, just Rs 50 has to be deposited along with submission of Aadhaar card, pan card and two passport size pictures.

On the other hand, when it comes to banks, their managers said they have also been getting a large number of requests for new accounts but could not entertain them as the staff are busy in currency exchange .

NK Sharda, manager of Punjab National Bank (PNB) at Bharat Nagar Chownk, said, “As of now, in all banks, the staff is more than busy with currency exchange but as the rush dwindles we will start making new accounts.”

Similarly, Surjeet Singh, manager of Dena Bank on Ferozpur Road said that plans are being chalked out for creating new bank accounts. Special staff will be dedicated for the same service as we are expecting those customers for whom banking experience will be new, pointed out Singh.

Talking to the new account holders , they seemed excited and willing to learn how to operate a bank account and of course an ATM. “I used to hear a lot about bank accounts and how money is withdrawn from an ATM but now I also have an account and I am excited about it. I will be savvy soon to all these services,”said Bhajan Singh, a watchman at one of the residential areas.