More than 2000 ATMs were closed in the ten months between May 2017 and February 2018 in different locations of the country, RBI data examined by FE Online said. The total number of onsite bank ATMs now stand at 107,630 from nearly 110,116 in May 2017, as on February 2018. The number of offsite bank ATMs have in fact increased and are now 99,029 from 98,360 in May 2017. The ATMs which are located at the branch premises are called on-site ATMs and the ATMs located away from the branch is called off-site ATM.
The number of onsite ATMs for State Bank of India (SBI) reduced from 29,150 to 26,505 between May 2017 and February 2018 while the number of offsite ATMs increased from 29,917 to 32,680 during the same duration. The ATMs of Punjab National Bank (PNB) observed a reduction of 655 onsite and 467 offsite ATMs, RBI data said.
In order to reduce the cost associated with setting up and maintaining ATMs banks are shutting them down, said DT Franco, General Secretary, All India Bank Officers’ Confederation (AIBOC) told FE Online.
Cash drought in northeastern states
A lot of inconvenience has been caused to the people in the northeastern states in the last few days due to cash drought in most of the ATMs of the region. IANS reported citing unidentified senior bank officials that the lag in supplying of remittances by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in Guwahati caused the note crisis in many of the ATMs.”We should put fresh notes in the ATMs to run the apparatus smoothly.
Currently, the bank has old notes and we have asked the RBI in Guwahati to supply fresh notes of different denominations urgently,” State Bank of India (SBI) Regional Manager Dipak Chowdhury told IANS. He also said, “We expect that the situation would be normalised by mid next week. This is a temporary phenomenon.”