As per RBI directives, ATMs throughout the nation were scheduled to start functioning today, November 11, with a daily withdrawal limit of Rs 2,000. In the aftermath of the government’s demonetisation move, the common man was forced to make do with cashless transactions and limited money in the pocket. Hence today, when ATMs were announced to be opened for withdrawal, long queues of people were formed outside even the smallest ATMs in every area. However, the public was disappointed to see shutters down at most ATMs in the city.
Some streets and areas in Mumbai, have about 7 ATMs (SBI, Bank of India, Union Bank of India, Axis Bank, Canara Bank, Dena Bank, HDFC), all of which were shut today morning at 11 am. See images below.
A guard outside SBI Bank informed this correspondent that the ATM hadn’t been refilled with Rs 100 notes and hence, there was no point keeping it open. An official inside Canara Bank said, “There is no cash to fill the ATMs. Those who wish to exchange money have been asked to stand in a queue outside the bank branch.” Citizens frantically waiting outside the ATMs complained about how they expected to withdraw money from ATMs today, but were once again left to stand in queues outside bank branches. According to RBI regulations and features of the Diebold ATM (Diebold is a manufacturer of Automated Teller Machines or ATMs),
- A typical ATM has 4 cassettes in it.
- Each cassette holds 2500 notes.
Considering that now only notes with Rs 100 denominations can be filled in the ATM, the total amount than a single machine can stock is approximately Rs 10,00,000 (100x2500x4). Assuming that per customer withdraws Rs 2,000, only 500 people will be able to withdraw money before the machine turns dry. One would ideally expect ATM machines during such incidents to be refilled at short intervals during the day. However, according to Rahul Sahai, probationary officer, Punjab and Sind Bank, “ Banks haven’t received any money to stock their ATMs in the first place. Hence, ATMs throughout the city are shut even today despite directives from the RBI.”