Demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000: Ten latest developments

Updated: Nov 18, 2016, 15:06 IST | mid-day online correspondent

Ever since PM Narendra Modi announced demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000, cash crunch has been the talk of the town. Here are some of the significant developments that have taken place recently

Ever since Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000, cash crunch has been the talk of the town. Here are some of the significant developments that have taken place recently.

Cash available at petrol pumps
In a bid to ease cash crunch, the government has allowed dispensing cash of up to Rs 2,000 through debit card swipe at select petrol pumps. The facility will be available at 2,500 petrol pumps. "It has been decided that an amount up to Rs 2000 per day per person in cash can be dispensed against swiping of debit card from select petrol pumps where POS machines of SBI are already available," an official said. POS machines are the machines, which are generally used for debit or credit card transactions.

Temporary currency exchange counters at airports
National airports operator AAI on Thursday said it will allow scheduled commercial banks to operate temporary currency exchange counters at aerodromes as people still face difficulties in the wake of demonetisation of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes. "Decision of the Government of India to demonetise the currency (Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes) across the nation has led to currency hardships for airport users and air travellers," AAI said in a release. Airports Authority of India (AAI) said such counters can operate free of cost till December 31. It would not levy any charges for space and electricity.

Government lowers cash exchange limit
Government on Thursday lowered the exchange limit for now-defunct Rs 500 and 1,000 rupee notes to Rs 2,000 from the existing cap of Rs 4,500, effective from November 18. The over-the-counter exchange of Rs 500/1,000 in return of new currency will be available "once per person till December 30".

Also Read: Demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000: Here is all you must know

Rs 2.5 lakh cash for weddings
The government has allowed up to Rs 2.5 lakh cash withdrawal from bank account of a bride or groom or their parents for a marriage during the ongoing wedding season. "This has been considered by the government and decided that for wedding ceremonies, up to Rs 2.5 lakh will be allowed to be withdrawn from account if father or mother or the bride and groom," Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das. He said the account has to be KYC compliant and self declaration has to be given to the bank. The Rs 2.5 lakh can be withdrawn from only one account.

No cash refunds for rail tickets of Rs 5,000 or more
The Railways recently issued circular stating that tickets worth Rs 5,000 and over that were booked between November 16 and 24 will not be refunded over the counter in cash. People who booked such tickets will have to file a TDR (ticket deposit receipt) and get the refund through cheques or ECS. According to the circular, a TDR has to be filed after surrendering the original ticket, within the prescribed time limit for cancellation of ticket.

Mumbai Metro goes cashless
Mumbai Metro on Wednesday said it will issue single and return journey token in real-time cashless transactions. For this, Mumbai Metro One Pvt Ltd (MMOPL) has tied up with Paytm, a leading mobile wallet through which commuters can buy tickets. Commuters can install and recharge the Paytm app on their mobiles, switch it on, scan the QR code for identying Mumbai Metro as the payee, and pay the correct amount of fare.

A unique transaction ID will be displayed on the Paytm app and the mobile phone with the ticketing officer at the counter will receive a SMS with the same transaction ID. After confirming the match, the ticketing officer will issue the token for the journey, completing the real-time cashless transaction in just a few seconds, said MMOPL spokesperson.

For more stories on Demonetisation, click here

Indelible ink to prevent multiple cash withdrawals
The government will use indelible ink like during elections to prevent people from making more than the permissible number of times cash withdrawal from bank counters, it was announced on Tuesday. Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das told the media that Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a second review meeting on demonetisation with officials of the Finance Ministry and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to ascertain why there continued to be such long queues at banks.

"It was found that in many places same set of people are visiting to get cash. They are going from one branch to another branch. As a result, the benefit of withdrawal was getting restricted to a few people," Das said. "To prevent this, indelible ink marks will be used, like in elections, at the cash counters," he said, adding unscrupulous elements were trying to convert their black money into white by going to different banks branches several times over in a day.

Properties without KYC compliance to be seized
A day after PM Narendra Modi delivered a fiery speech indicating he was not done cleaning out corruption, real estate experts predict that his next move could end up shaking the very foundation of black money — benami property dealings. Thousands of crores of black money is thought to be parked in benami property deals. The rich and corrupt have been known to park their excess funds in real estate by using a frontman in order to evade questions about the size or source of their wealth.

Property experts believe that the Modi government will target this menace by imposing a mandatory Know Your Customer (KYC) registration for all such deals. The move will make it compulsory for all property owners (commercial, residential and even plots of land) to identify themselves before the government. Those who are found to possess benami properties and refrain from identifying themselves will face time in prison and the properties will also be wrested from them.

Pay power, water bills with old notes
While the union ministry for road transport and highways has extended the toll suspension till November 18 midnight, Maharashtra has extended the date for accepting Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes for electricity and water bills by another 15 days. Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari tweeted on Monday evening, "Toll suspension is extended till 18th November midnight across all National Highways."

Alert cops of volatile situations via WhatsApp
The Maharashtra Police on Tuesday issued a list of 46 mobile phone numbers and an advisory, asking people to reach out to it through WhatsApp, calls and SMSes to prevent any volatile situation outside banks or ATMs. Click here for full details

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