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Cash crunch: Adequate currency in circulation, says FM Jaitley

New Delhi: Amid reports that a large number of ATMs have run out of cash in several states and jibes from the opposition, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has said there is enough currency in circulation and that a temporary shortage in some places is being tackled quickly.

 

There are reports of ATMs running dry from states like Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Telangana, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Bihar and Madhya Pradesh.

Jaitley said in a tweet that he has reviewed the currency situation in the country.

“Overall there is more than the adequate currency in circulation and also available with the Banks. The temporary shortage caused by ‘sudden and unusual increase’ (in demand) in some areas is being tackled quickly,” Jaitley said.

Minister of State for Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla said the government has formed a committee to address the problem of currency shortage in certain states and the issue would be resolved in next 2-3 days.

“The Government has set up a state-wise committee and RBI has also formed a committee to transfer currency from one state to other because for money transfer you need the permission of the RBI. It (the shortage) will be solved in 2-3 days,” Shukla said.

Chhattisgarh chief minister Raman Singh said his State “like many other states, has been affected by a cash crunch. The situation will be resolved as soon as possible.”

Many ATMs across Lucknow, the capital of Uttar Pradesh, have no cash including two right next to the RBI office in Gomti Nagar.

The opposition was quick to attack the government, with the Congress conducting a poll on Twitter that asked whether ATMs running out of cash was “just gross mismanagement by Modi government…or…a deliberate move.”

Congress president Rahul Gandhi said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had destroyed the banking system. Nirav Modi fled with Rs 30,000 crore and the prime minister did not utter a word. We were forced to stand in queues as he snatched Rs 500-1,000 notes from our pockets.

CPM leader Sitaram Yechuary tweeted, “ATMs were empty in November 2016. ATMs are empty now. And the only party flush with cash is the BJP: the people suffer.”
RBI report shows that the currency in circulation in the country has reached the pre-demonetisation level of about Rs 17 lakh crore.

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