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New Delhi, October 17: The new Rs 200 bank notes that were introduced by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in August this year will be available in the ATMs only by the year-end. ATM operators informed that the new currency notes were still not available with them, a report by TOI stated. Moreover, the size of the new notes is different from the existing ones and so, once the notes are received by ATM operators, they will have to understand the dimensions and accordingly reconfigure the ATM cassettes. ATM operator in NCR manages more than 1 lakh ATMs across the country. NCR Managing Director Navroze Dustur was quoted by TOI that most of the banks have not even requested for ATM recalibration for the new Rs 200 notes.
Following the demonetisation announcement on November 9, 2016, the Reserve Bank had introduced Rs 2,000 notes and also new Rs 500 notes with additional security features. The move led to shortages in the system, putting pressure on small denomination currency, mainly Rs 50 and Rs 100. With the introduction of Rs 200 notes, the cash crunch issue is likely to be eased as people across the nation are facing difficulties using higher denominations of Rs 500 and Rs 2000. After unveiling the Rs 200 bank notes, the RBI had said that it may take up to three months for ATMs to start dispensing the new denomination currency as it will involve a huge exercise of recalibration. When the ATMs are recalibrated, the cassettes (small boxes which hold and dispense cash) are changed as per the dimensions of the currency notes. Each cassette can hold 2,500 notes.
Reports said that some banks have even asked the ATM companies to begin testing the new note for recalibration of the machines, though they have not got supplies of the new currency. Only last year, the banks were involved in the recalibration of ATM machines after the demonetisation of high-value currency notes in November. Reserve Bank of India (RBI) did issue a statement saying that the supply of the new Rs 200 notes would soon be ramped up but has not given any time-frame by which it will be available in adequate numbers.
As per an IANS report, ATM manufacturing companies said in September that they have not received any directive from the RBI regarding the recalibration of ATMs for the new Rs 200 note. They disclosed that some banks have at an informal level have asked them to start testing of the new note as it is of a different size. It is yet to be seen whether all the 2.25 lakh ATM machines across India would be recalibrated for dispensing the new note.
Ravi B Goyal, Chairman and Managing Director, AGS Transact Technologies Limited said that the entire process of recalibration can be completed within 90 days without affecting the regular functionality of ATMs to a large extent. In fact, the ATMs will continue to be fully operational during recalibration and will continue to supply Rs 100, Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 denominations. AGS Transact Technologies Limited claims to have an installed base of 60,000 ATMs across the nation.
Earlier in September Goyal had said that the process of recalibration will begin once we receive the directive from the RBI. He said the size of the new notes is different from the existing ones and so, once we receive the new notes, we will have to understand its dimensions and accordingly reconfigure the ATM cassettes. Next, we will have to check if the supply of notes is good enough to run the cassettes at full capacity.”
The Rs 200 denomination banknote in the Mahatma Gandhi (New) series has the motif of the Sanchi Stupa on the reverse while its base colour is bright yellow. The note has other designs and geometric patterns aligning with the overall colour scheme, both at the obverse and reverse.