Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s historic move to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes had bewildered many. But the sense of awe seems to be turning into annoyance as people continue to experience inconvenience. A cashier at a State Bank of India branch in Nagpur today died of heart attack. RV Rajesh died while he was in the bank at Ambhajari, a report said. As the lines grew longer and the new currency in circulation shorter, more people began to feel the heat of the government’s move. There have been 12 reported deaths allegedly due to the demonetisation as claimed by the families. While some deaths are out of shock, most people died because of standing in long queues, a report said.
Chaotic scenes could still be seen at banks and ATMs as people queued up for hours to get valid currency notes to meet their daily expenses, even as the government yesterday lowered the exchange limit of defunct bills and eased certain restrictions on withdrawal norms. On the 9th day of demonetisation, bank branches and cash vending machines are still struggling to manage huge rush. Adding to the woes, most ATMs were either dysfunctional or running out of cash. It is taking people around 1-2 hours to withdraw Rs 2,500, the upper limit set by the government. Bankers are saying it may take another 10-15 days to get all ATMs re-calibrated to dispense high denomination notes of Rs 500/2,000.
To ease inconvenience to the people, the government yesterday had allowed withdrawals up to Rs 2.5 lakh for weddings and up to Rs 50,000 for farmers but more than halved the limit of exchange of defunct notes to Rs 2,000.