Monday, June 14, 2021
HomeOpinionDiaryImpact of demonetization on banking sector

Impact of demonetization on banking sector

The All India Bank Officers Association (AIBOA) had given a call for demonstration against the problems that various banks and their employees were facing due to demonetization. Pointing out that the banking system itself is losing credibility because of frequent changes in RBI/government policies, AIBOC General Secretary Harvinder Singh said customer dissatisfaction is increasing because of chaos and confusion created in implementation of the scheme.

Bank employees are feeling increasingly targeted in the face of public anger. The constant notifications and the lack of cash provided have led banking establishments facing the wrath of clients. Banks staff members serve the people and are working overtime to keep their commitments, but are helpless when they do not get enough cash to meet the minimum requirement of the customers. The government’s constant flip-flop on exchanging and depositing old cash notes in the bank branches, besides changing the limits on cash withdrawals has also created lot of confusion among the people.

Bankers know banking best so they should be not involved in questioning for accepting deposits. Further, no accountability should be fixed on the bank officers in this respect as they are plunged with a job not anticipated of them. It is true that there are some black sheep among the bank employees and officers but just because of that one cannot paint all of the bank personnel and officers with one tainted brush. Apart from the given problems the banks’ staff have to face with some unruly customers. It is commendable that they are serving their customers with a smile and are also working overtime without extra wages.

Public sector bank officers are being subjected to the anger, anguish and wrath of customers or general public due to short supply of currency notes to the banks. The banks have been at the receiving end of much of the troubles, leading to a deterioration in bank-customer relationships, with increased reports of violence against banks and bank employees as public frustrations grow. There is acute shortage of Rs. 100 currency notes and hence even the recalibrated ATMs are not able to dispense cash to the customers. The banks have rightly demanded increased transparency in the cash flow and called on the RBI to ensure the protection of bank employees.

The RBI authorities should assure the supply of adequate cash to all banks and branches so that ATMs are restored without further delay. There should be transparency in cash supply to banks by the banking regulator without any discrimination. Even Prime Minister Narendra Modi has appreciated the commendable work done by banks. Many have worked honestly during the recent crisis after demonetisation. While the culprits deserve severe punishment those who have worked hard should be compensated. Does anyone talk about the unlucky persons who lost their lives due to stress and strain after standing in the queue or working behind the counters? Government should also take care of their kith and kin and provide adequate compensation.

(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)

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