As the process of exchange of Rs 2,000 notes started from today, various bank branches saw mixed reactions from the customers.
The panic, which was witnessed last time during demonetization, seemed missing this time among customers. While at a few branches, there was a trickle of such customers to exchange or deposit pink currency notes, there was a mild rush at other branches. Sumit Nandi, deputy general secretary, headquarter of SBI Staff Association felt the rush is temporary.
"The immediate rush, which generally accompanies such announcements, is there. Our staff is trying to accommodate the needs of the customers as much as possible.
But, we will only be able to gauge the situation only after a couple of days. We will also look into how much crunch our staff is facing or the problems faced by the customers," said Mr Nandi. "A pharma company distributor, when asked, said he has a few Rs 2,000 notes but is not yet rushing to the bank. "I will decide later.
There is no rush for me, said the Punjab National Bank customer. "Let me tell you if we see there is any problem faced by customers or our staff then we, from United Forum of Bank Unions, will take it up with the management," said Mr Nandi, adding, "We will be able to accommodate with Rs 500, Rs 100 bank notes. Rs 10 notes are not being printed much, of late. So, we may have problems if anyone asks for Rs 10 notes."
Sanjay Das, general secretary, All India Nationalised Bank Officers’ Federation, said the rush is missing, unlike last time. "We did not witness much rush till now as there is a lot of time limit provided by the RBI. Also, common people do not have much of these notes with them as Rs 2, 000 notes are not being printed any more.
Had the time limit been short, we could have seen a rush. Also, the government has made the process of exchange of notes simple, with no identity requirements.
These notes can also be exchanged at RBI's regional rural counters along with business correspondent points. There are 19 RRB counters in the state," said Mr Das. But, he remained apprehensive about the days ahead. We do not know how many notes are in circulation, we can only guess.
The situation might change in the coming days," added Mr Das