Kolkata petrol pumps see 10 times hike in payments in Rs 2,000 notes
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Kolkata: Petrol pumps in Kolkata claim that they have witnessed a 10-fold increase in payments using Rs 2,000 notes from people buying fuel since the RBI announced withdrawal of the high-value currency from circulation, officials said on Monday.

In the case of jewellers, the increase in payment by Rs 2,000 notes is 15-20 per cent compared to the weeks before May 19 when the central bank made the announcement. “We are getting 10 times higher number of Rs 2,000 currency notes now since the announcement. We used to get 10-15 notes a day, but now it has risen to 130-140 on average,” West Bengal Petroleum Dealers Association president Prasenjit Sen told PTI.

However, India Bullion and Jewellers Association president (West Bengal) Ashok Begani said, “There is no panic buying as was witnessed in 2016 when currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 denominations that were in circulation at that time were withdrawn overnight”.

The use of Rs 2,000 notes by customers has risen 15-20 per cent since the announcement of its withdrawal, said Bachhraj Bamalwa, partner of jewellery chain Nemichand Bamalwa & Sons.

Sen claimed that some of the bank branches are seeking extra details while receiving Rs 2,000 notes.

State Bank of India CGM (Kolkata circle) Prem Anup Sinha, however, clarified, “The norm for deposit of Rs 2,000 notes remains the same as for other denominations such as Rs 500, Rs 200 or Rs 100 notes.”

Confederation of West Bengal Trade Association president Sushil Poddar said that the circulation of Rs 2,000 notes has definitely increased in general trade, but that the hike is not extraordinary and there is no panic.

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RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das on Monday said that most of the withdrawn Rs 2,000 notes are expected to be returned by the deadline of September 30.

He said that the impact of the withdrawal on the economy will be “very marginal”, he said, adding Rs 2,000 currency notes made up for just 10.8 per cent of the total currency in circulation.

Also Read | RBI expects most Rs 2,000 notes returned by Sep 30: RBI Governor

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