Amid curfew,ATMs dry


Srinagar, Feb 15: While the continued curfew in Kashmir has kept bank branches closed, the ATMs have disappointed the people.
Bank customers from various areas told Greater Kashmir that they could not withdraw the money from the ATM(s) as “most of the teller machines were out of cash while others were not functioning.”
The customers said the ATMs could have proved some relief to the people but for their non-functioning. “These machines disappoint you when you need them the most,” rued a customer.
Many customers said that although at some places the ATMs were working “there was no cash in them.”
“I had to take credit from my friend as I had run out of the money while the ATMs of the JK Bank were closed. From where could one manage money in such a situation?” asked Aqeel Ahmad, a Srinagar resident. 
However, the bank officials expressed their helplessness to keep the ATMs functional.
President and Zonal Head, JK Bank, Kashmir (Central), Bashir Ahmad Lone, said due to restrictions “we could not open bank branches and most of the ATMs were not operational as the security guards who take care of these machines were not allowed to attend their duty.” 
“Even cash loading in the ATMs was not done due to which the machines could not function. At some places the ATMs are linked with the bank branches or with the central branch, so it was difficult to run those ATMs as the employees were not able to reach the office,” Lone said.
He, however, added that on Thursday almost all the branches of the JK Bank functioned. “Our 120 branches in the central zone that includes districts Srinagar, Budgam and Ganderbal operated normally on Thursday. But due to curfew in place in the old city we could not open our branches there,” Lone said.
Shabir Ahmad, branch head, Axis Bank, said: “We had been told by the police to close our ATMs. However, our ATM attached with the main branch of the bank in the Srinagar city was functional.”
Pertinently, on Wednesday, Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, while reviewing the situation had said that in the interest of general public “the ATM facility is being provided hassle free, presently 185 out of 252 ATMs in the valley are functional.”

Lastupdate on : Fri, 15 Feb 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 15 Feb 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 16 Feb 2013 00:00:00 IST

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