RBI to impose penalties on banks for failing to ensure cash availability at ATMs

The Reserve Bank of India has proposed penalties for banks and White Label ATM operators if their ATMs are found to be lying without replenishment for more than ten hours to ensure customers and not inconvenienced. The regulator also directed banks and White Label ATM Operators to ensure minimum duration of cash outs in ATMs.

“It has been decided that the banks and White Label ATM Operators (WLAOs) shall strengthen their systems and mechanisms to monitor availability of cash in ATMs and ensure timely replenishment to avoid cash-outs,” the RBI said on Tuesday. “Any non-compliance in this regard shall be viewed seriously and shall attract monetary penalty.”

Cash-out at any ATM of more than ten hours in a month will attract a flat penalty of Rs. 10,000 per ATM. In case of White Label ATMs, the penalty would be charged to the bank which is meeting the cash requirement of that particular WLA. The new norms are effective from October 01, 2021.

The regulator’s observations came after it reviewed the downtime of ATMs due to cash-outs and came to a conclusion that ATM operations affected by cash-outs lead to non-availability of cash and cause avoidable inconvenience to the members of the public.

Banks have been asked to submit a system generated statement on downtime of ATMs due to non- replenishment of cash to the Issue Department of RBI. In case of white label ATM operators, the banks which are meeting their cash requirement will have to submit a separate statement on cash-out of such ATMs due to non-replenishment of cash. These statements will have to submitted every month.

Source-Economic Times

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