Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said on Saturday that she has had in-depth discussions with bank managers who have provided uninterrupted customer service and kept all branches open. Praising the efforts of the bankers during this difficult time, the minister said that it was encouraging to know that they were doing their best even during the foreclosure.
“Finance Minister Smt @nsitharaman today made private calls to the CMDs of all public sector banks. a tweet.
She also assured that she would speak to the states and ensure that there were no restrictions on the movement of cash, bankers, sellers or bank bribes.
“We had a detailed conversation with the bank managers – public and private. Encouraging to know that they are doing their best even during the lockout. They are confident they will provide uninterrupted customer service. Social distancing is respected because well, “said Sitharaman in another tweet.
She also asked the bankers to make sure there was enough money in the ATMs, branches and correspondent banks.
Minister of Finance Smt @nsitharaman today made private calls to the CMDs of all public sector banks. @TheOfficialSBI @pnbindia @MyIndianBank @canarabank @UnionBankTweets @IOBIndia @ AllBank1865 @bank_andhra @BankofIndia_IN @bankofbaroda @mahabank @centralbank_in @ CorporationBan2
– NSitharamanOffice (@nsitharamanoffc) March 28, 2020
The virtual meeting also brought together Secretary of Financial Services Debasish Panda and joint secretaries Madnesh Kumar Mishra and Suchindra Mishra from the Financial Services Department.
During the call, she also asked the CEOs to ensure that all branches and ATMs remain open and continue to operate. In addition, she advised them to provide authorization to bank staff and to coordinate with the district administration for the proper passage of bank staff.
Earlier this week, the government announced a series of measures, including the direct transfer of cash assistance benefits to the poor, the elderly and the disabled, to ease the challenges of the coronavirus epidemic.
“The entire banking fraternity deserves recognition and thanks for their tireless and courageous efforts to ensure that banking services continue in these difficult times and that every customer is reached in a safe and timely manner,” she said. .
Appreciating the efforts of the bankers, she said, “bank officials and staff have always been on the front line of providing services to customers during this period of adversity, whether it is providing physical money where it’s needed or keeping branches open no matter what. “
According to the Association of Indian Banks (IBA), 1,055,988 bank branches across the country were operational on Friday. However, the banks are closed on Saturday and Sunday. The Minister of Finance also asked customers to adapt to digital banking services and to avoid visiting bank branches.
“PSB staff and customers across India practice #SocialDistancing. Congratulations to the bankers who provide the service required during these test times. Customers are requested (upon request) to adapt #NetBanking #MobileBanking and visit branch only if they have to, “she said.
Many banks have decided to set up mobile ATMs to reduce the pressure on branches. To serve those at risk of traveling to withdraw money, Indian Bank has taken the initiative to deploy its mobile ATM, the bank said in a statement.
The mobile van carrying ATMs will travel to the designated city and remain in each location for a specific period, he added, adding that it will make life easier for the public to attract money near the homes.
During this time, the IBA called on customers to strictly respect social distance and to avoid visiting branches, unless it is very necessary.