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Cash tales: From Kashmir to Bastar, demonetisation has hit India’s hinterland

It is not only urban India which is reeling from the aftermath of the currency ban. In India’s hinterland, demonetisation’s effects are becoming visible.

black money crackdown Updated: Dec 14, 2016 18:28 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Demonetisation,Cash crunch,Currency ban
Johny K K, a retired teacher in Guruvayoor, in Kerala’s Thrissur , at a bank to withdraw money. Small town and rural India have been battling the effects of the currency ban. (Vivek Nair/Hindustan Times)

After Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s November 8 decision to ban Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes, India has been grappling with the after-effects.

Most of the narrative has centered on urban India, where long queues outside banks and dry ATMs are a common sight. But India’s hinterland has started feeling the cash crunch, though the effects were slow to materialize.

From the hard-to-reach mangroves of Sunderbans to the Maoist hotbed of Bastar, Kerala’s cash-rich temples to Kashmir’s calm and the struggle of farmers in Maharashtra and Punjab, we bring you six stories of how demonetisation has unfolded across the country.

An SBI customer service point operator is this remote area’s only source of currency.
Tribals in this dirt-poor region fear that Maoists, who have been hit badly by the currency ban, will double the extortion
In Kashmir, queues outside banks have been without rush, unlike the rest of the country.
Farmers in the region are now coping with the currency shortage, apart from the chronic agrarian crisis.
Nursery owner Nek Singh Khokh’s sales have dropped over the past month since buyers are low on cash.
In a twist of irony, ATMs around the cash-rich Guruvayoor Temple are empty.

For more coverage of demonetisation and the currency ban on old Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes, visit

First Published: Dec 13, 2016 16:17 IST