Severe cash crunch in ATMs in several states

ATMs in cities of Uttar Pradesh Bihar Andhra Pradesh Maharashtra and poll-bound Karnataka were either not operating or showed no cash signs reminiscent of post-demonetisation scene

The FM stated that the ministry has reviewed the currency situation and the shortage is caused due to "sudden and unusual increase" in some areas, which is being tackled quickly.

Cash-starved customers in large numbers started queuing up outside ATMs and banks since early Tuesday morning to withdraw currency notes from vending machines, but a lot of them were either out of service or had a board notifying "no cash".

"We've cash currency of Rs 1,25,000 cr right now". RBI sources have said that "higher than normal withdrawal of cash" in these states have led to acute shortage of cash.

According to reports, officials of the Finance Ministry held a meeting with the Reserve Bank of India to take stock of the situation.

Minister of State for Finance, S P Shukla told ANI that the cash crunch was due to some states having low currency reserves in comparison to others. "It (the shortage) will be solved in 2-3 days", Shukla said.

Automated teller machines (ATMs) have reportedly stayed dry on Tuesday across several states, including Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Telangana and elsewhere - bringing back the spectre of demonetisation. When the cash shortfall was reported from Andhra Pradesh and Telangana in March, it was attributed by some to a misunderstanding of the Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance Bill, which had a "bail in" clause where depositors would bear a portion of any losses.

Meanwhile, the RBI on Tuesday formed a committee to tide over the cash crunch crisis that has hit several states in the country. We need to pay for the admission of children and purchase groceries and vegetables, ' said a common man from Varanasi. The situation has been the same since last 15 days.

On Monday, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan claimed there was a conspiracy behind Rs 2000 notes disappearing from the market.

In Madhya Pradesh, residents of Bhopal say that the cash crunch is troubling them for the past 15 days. "The government will act tough on this", he said.

Public sector bank executives also said there is a spurt in demand for cash to make payments for agricultural activities as well. Most of the ATMs are not dispensing cash, the ones which are dispensing, have only Rs. 500 notes.

"We have visited five-six ATMs since morning. It will be done in three days". Today, Rs 16.5 lakh crore currency notes have been printed and circulated.

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