People in Kerala for the past two days are facing a severe shortage of currency notes. State Finance Minister Thomas Issac on Tuesday said the crisis is severe and it has come to a stage that even the payment of salaries and pensions through state treasuries is being affected.
While most state government officials and pensioners are dependent on state-run treasuries, Tuesday saw large crowds waiting anxiously in front of many treasuries in the state as close to 110 state treasuries were not able to source money from the banks which supply currency notes to them.
“We have been waiting since morning and it’s been several hours. The treasury officials say they have not been able to get adequate currency notes,” said a group of women pensioners in Kochi. The worst affected have been the people who draw money from various State Bank of India ATMs in the state capital.
“There is a limit to putting people to trouble, as for the past two days, I have been visiting numerous SBI ATMs. If there is no currency, why can’t they put a board, stating that there is no currency,” said a working woman, who has still not been able to withdraw her salary.
At the height of the shortage of currency notes in the wake of the demonetisation in November and December, money was flown to the state capital. But this time, the banking industry appears to have failed to make alternate arrangements, leaving people hapless.