Defunct rural bank branches becoming active

Demonetisation effect

SHILLONG: The Centre’s demonetisation move has led customers to avail themselves of the services of almost defunct branches of State Bank of India in rural areas of Meghalaya.
A top SBI official dealing with transactions in rural areas of the State said a case in point is Mawnai, 5km from Mairang. “There was no customer with Mawnai branch in the past as it was clubbed with Mairang, but since Wednesday last, it was activated along with other branches and is helping the people immensely,” the official added.
The official, who toured several rural areas with an aim to ease the customers’ stress, said that he personally sat in a counter at SBI Mairang and received cash from the customers.
He also pointed out the difficulties SBI staff are facing due to the extended working hours. “A lady staff posted at Nongstoin felt uneasy and vomited while the accountant posted at Nongpoh was admitted in hospital due to suffocation,” the official said.
According to the official, the staff have taken the development positively and are carrying out their duties with patience and dedication.
The official also said that with people in the rural areas traditionally keeping money in their homes, there will be increased exchange of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes in the banks. “Whenever the exchange is high, questions are raised, but customers can explain the source of income since they preferred to keep the money in their homes rather than putting it in the banks,” the official added.  He said that a church in Ranikor deposited Rs 15 lakh “which is nothing extraordinary”.

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