A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced demonetisation of high-value currency notes, shopkeepeers on Wednesday were having a tough time, as they complained of diminished sale mostly because they ran short of change.
“By this time, I used to do sales worth Rs 6,000-7,000, but it’s 11 a.m. now and I have sold merchandise worth just Rs 2,000,” a shopkeeper in Noida told IANS.
“I had to return scores of customers back, as they all were carrying either Rs 500 or Rs 1,000 notes. Where will one get so much change from,” he exclaimed.
Another shopkeeper, who runs a general store, was just as plaintive and wondered what’s the use of all this (banning big denomination notes) when the big fish stash their black money in banks overseas.
“I feel this move has caused more hassles to general public than it will do any harm to the real culprits. What about the people who sustain on cash only, much of what comprises these notes? And then there’s a limit on what you can get from bank in loose change … this all is a big hassle,” shopkeeper Manish told IANS.
Apart from the shopkeepers, even the people thronging ATMs after last evening’s announcement met with almost interminably long queues as the news spread far and wide.
“It took me two hours to withdraw money from my local ATM. The queue outside grew longer because even if one wanted to withdraw Rs 2,000, he had to do at least four transactions. This contributed largely to the wait at the ATMs,” Rajan, a PR executive from Alaknanda colony in south Delhi, told IANS.
“But as it’s reckoned among the posher colonies of Delhi, better sense prevailed and the crowd struck a consensus among themselves and decided that no one would do more than two transactions at a time. If you want to do more than that, you will have to start all over from the back of the queue,” he added.
Exempted for next three days from the ban, the chemist shops, nevertheless, made ad-hoc rules about the transactions they were undertaking.
“We are accepting all notes, even those of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000, but only on the condition that one buys stuff worth Rs 300 at least,” a chemist shop attendant told IANS. “Other than that, the business is usual as before,” he added.