Compensate bank account holders for not being able to withdraw cash using ATM

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Recently banks have revised their charges for using ATMs and the account holder is also charged when the account holder does not maintain a certain minimum balance. Following are the charges by Major Indian Banks - State Bank of India, ICICI, HDFC and Axis Bank: (Source: The Economic Times)

State Bank of India
1. From April 1, SBI will permit savings bank account holders to deposit cash three times a month free of charge. Beyond that, it will charge Rs 50 plus service tax for every transaction.
2. In case of current account, the levy could go as high as Rs 20,000.
3. SBI account holders will also have to keep a minimum balance in their accounts, failing which they will be fined. The fine will be lower for rural areas.
4. In metropolitan areas, there will be a charge of Rs 100 plus service tax if the balance falls below 75 per cent of the minimum available balance of Rs 5,000. If the shortfall is 50 per cent or less, the bank will charge Rs 50 plus service tax. SBI used to have such charges in 2012.
5. Withdrawal of cash from ATMs will attract a charge of up to Rs 20 if the number of transactions from ATMs of other banks exceeds three and Rs 10 for more than five withdrawals from SBI ATMs.
6. However, SBI will not levy any charge on withdrawals from its own ATMs if the balance exceeds Rs 25,000. In case of withdrawals from ATMs of other banks, there will be no charge if the balance exceeds Rs 1 lakh.
7. SBI will charge Rs 15 for SMS alerts per quarter from debit card holders who maintain average quarterly balance of up to Rs 25,000 during the three months. There will be no charge for UPI/USSD transactions of up to Rs 1,000.

Axis Bank
1. Axis Bank customers will be allowed five free transactions every month, including deposits and withdrawals. Above that, customers will be charged a minimum fee of Rs 95 per transaction.
2. Up to five non-home branch transactions will be free for customers, subject to a maximum per-day deposit of Rs 50,000. For larger deposits or the sixth transaction, the bank would charge Rs 2.50 per Rs 1,000, or Rs 95 per transaction, whichever is higher.

HDFC Bank
1. HDFC Bank will levy Rs 150 per transaction, beyond four free ones (deposits and withdrawals) each month.
2. The new charges would apply to savings as well as salary accounts.
3. For home-branch transactions, the bank will allow deposits or withdrawals of up to Rs 2 lakh free of cost at one go per day. Beyond this, it will charge Rs 5 per Rs 1,000, or Rs 150.
4. At non-home branches, transactions beyond Rs 25,000 a day will attract a charge of Rs 5 per Rs 1,000, or Rs 150.

ICICI Bank
1. There will be no charge for first four transactions a month at branches in home city while Rs 5 per Rs 1,000 will be charged thereafter subject to a minimum of Rs 150 in one month.
2. The third-party limit would be Rs 50,000 per day.
3. For non-home branches, ICICI Bank would not charge for first cash withdrawal of a calendar month and Rs 5 per Rs 1,000 thereafter subject to a minimum of Rs 150.
4. For anywhere cash deposit, ICICI Bank would charge Rs 5 per Rs 1,000 (subject to a minimum of 150) at branches, while deposit at cash acceptance machines would be free of charge for first cash deposit of a calendar month and Rs 5 per Rs 1,000 thereafter.

(Source: The Economic Times)

The Issue
On April 9th, 2017, I tried in vain to withdraw cash from 11 ATMs (SBI - 5 ATMs, Federal Bank - 2 ATMS, South Indian Bank - 1 ATM, Muthoot Bank 1 ATM, ICICI - 1 ATM, Indian Bank - 1 ATM). These ATMs either didn't have cash or the shutters were down. When I checked with the locals around these ATMs, I was told that it was the norm on Sundays.

While the charges levied by the banks are essential for them to meet their overheads in maintaining accounts and ATMs, by levying these charges, they should also ensure that account holders should get uninterrupted services of facilities that is being offered. If a bank is unable to provide the service, then the account holder should be compensated (just like how an account holder is charged after X transactions)

Petition
Please sign this petition if you think account holders should be compensated for not being able to withdraw cash using ATM due to either of the following reasons:
1) No cash is available in ATM
2) ATM is not operational or shut down.



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