The reported currency shortage in a few parts of the country has made the headlines. The central government has cited reasons such as ‘hoarding’, ‘shortage mentality’ and a surprising surge in demand. However, hints were there since last year, according to The Indian Express. However, the Finance Ministry has assured that there is no need to panic. According to data obtained by IE, 86 percent of Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) were functioning.
Hints came last year
The Centre had stopped printing Rs 2,000 notes from April 1, 2017 to December 31, 2017. During that period, around 48 per cent of the total currency notes supplied are that of Rs 200 and lower denomination notes. According to reports, the gap between the Rs 2,000 notes and the Rs 500 currency notes has led to increasing levels of transactional hassles in the market. However, the central government had on April 17 admitted that there was currency shortage. It had also said that the situation has spread beyond Andhra Pradesh to states such as Bihar, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana and poll-bound Karnataka, where the rate of cash withdrawal was seen to be much higher than deposits, according to IE report.
Current situation across India
According to a Finance Ministry official, 66 percent ATMs are functioning in Bihar, 67 percent ATMs in Telangana, 75 percent in Andhra Pradesh, 76 percent in Karnataka, 67 percent in Jharkhand, 95 percent in Delhi, 90 percent in Odisha, 99 percent in Chandigarh, 99 percent in Himachal Pradesh and90 percent in Maharshtra, the IE report says.