Consumers’ org asks RBI to lift ATM charges
Dimapur, February 5
A consumers’ o based in Nagaland has appealed to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to review or revoke the imposition of drawing charges from ATMs as well as to lift the limits of the number of transactions money withdrawal by bank customers.
The Nagaland Voluntary Consumers’ Organization (NVCO) issued a press release on Thursday appealing to the RBI to “review/revoke” its decision to imposing a limit on transactions per month from ATM. “From November 2014, the frequent withdrawal of money from ATMs has become expensive with the RBI imposing a limit of 3 transactions per month from ATMs of other banks and 5 from the same bank in six metropolitan cities i.e., Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, Kolkata and Hyderabad which leads to filing a Public Interest Litigation seeking directions to allow banking customers to make unlimited number of transactions free of any charge on own bank ATMs,” the NVCO stated.
According to the NVCO, the RBI’s directive was ‘unfair’ and amounting to exploitation of consumer rights by levying extra charges. These charges are ‘arbitrary’ and ‘unreasonable’ on the part of the RBI, the organization stated.
“The RBI’s imposition upon the nationalized banks may not be the right move to promote good banking services in the country and without customer’s satisfaction the bank may not be able to function the way they would like to be. The RBI must not forget customer’s satisfaction in banking services,” the group stated.
“The RBI might be thinking that only rich people are keeping money in the banks but it is not and actually most the customers of the nationalized banks are from the poorer section of the society, who keep their hard earned money for safety, as it is not safe in their thatched huts from robbery or dacoity. Whenever necessary, they use to draw a hundred or two hundred rupees through ATM service for sudden and urgent needs.”
The NVCO stated further that customers deposit their money and ‘does not belong to the banks and banks are only safe keepers.’ From customer deposited money, the NVCO stated,”the banks are also incoming a good amount to give them a little interests with big profit. With the imposition of charges on ATM, customers have to pay charges on his/her own deposited money.”
Another query that the NVCO posed was that If “all the customers are to withdraw their money from all nationalized banks and deposit the money into private or rural banks, what will be the fate of the nationalized banks, which the RBI never think of it.” The imposition of ATM charges is a “big economic gust to the poorer section of the customers of the nationalized banks and it is just opposite push on the “Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana (PMJDY),” the NVCO explained.
Another point that the organization raised was that of tribal states where students are given scholarships, deposited to their bank accounts. With the ATM charges in force, the “students will be the most loser of their scholarship to continue their education and their future may be in trouble,” the organization added.