This year Malayalis will have a demonetized Vishu

  • *25% cut in Kerala’s currency share
  • *RBI defends move to encourage digital transactions
  • *40% ATMs empty, currency shortage acute
Thiruvananthapuram: With a 25% cut in the currency share, Kerala is reeling under cash shortage and gearing up for a cashless Vishu/Easter. The restrictions in cash flow, justified by the central bank as a means to encourage digital payments has come as a slap on the face of Malayalees.

40% of the ATMs in the state are empty and several new generation banks have restricted the ATM facility to their own customers. In Kerala, the SBT ATMs were dispensing cash but have gone dry like the SBI ATMs after the merger.

The fear of being tracked and the service charges have discouraged banking transactions after the demonetization. Customers are known to be withdrawing in bulk to avoid transaction costs. The removal of cash withdrawal limits have also slowed down digital transactions. The POS transactions have fallen from Rs. 89,180 crores in December 2016 to Rs. 64,200 crores in February.

The state treasuries are running dry creating immense pressure on citizens mostly pensioners. The officials have reported that the RBI isn't sanctioning even half of what is being demanded by the state. The communications department of the RBI has chosen not to respond to mails sent by this publication enquiring about the shortage.

The country is living on 26% less currency than it had before demonitisation. The circulation has fallen from Rs. 17.97 crores in November 2016 to Rs.13.35 crores as on March 31,2017. With this, it is almost for sure that there will be no fresh notes for ' Vishu kaineettam'.

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