Currency crunch seen in many parts of the country in past few days showed signs of easing today with 86 per cent of ATMs coming online, cash being transported to deficit areas and government presses working overtime to print new notes, officials said.
India's largest bank SBI Chairman Rajnish Kumar said the problem will be resolved by tomorrow.
"It is not a uniform cash crunch problem. It is there in geographies like Telangana and Bihar. We are hoping that the problem will be resolved by tomorrow because cash is in transition and it is reaching these states by today evening," SBI's Kumar told reporters here.
Meanwhile, government officials said that with special arrangements being made to transport cash to areas that during the last three days faced an "unusual spurt in demand", 86 per cent of the 2.2 lakh ATMs were operational, dispensing cash. This was higher than 80 per cent operational ATMs yesterday and just 60 per cent working ATMs on Tuesday.
The shortage has been blamed on the inadequate availability of Rs 2,000 currency notes, which sources in the government said could be because of hoarding ahead of elections. Also, ATM cassettes had not been configured to dispense smaller sized Rs 200 notes.
An official said the government has ramped up printing of currency notes and is operating all the four presses 24x7. The presses this week have been minting Rs 500 and Rs 200 notes without a break to meet an estimated Rs 70,000 crore of currency shortfall in the country.
On an average, the four presses of Security Printing and Minting Corporation of India Limited (SPMCIL) operate for 18-19 hours daily with a 3-4 hour break. But since the time ATMs ran dry, the presses are operating 24X7, the official told
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