The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has decided to levy monetary charges on banks if ATMs run out of cash, starting 1 October 2021.
RBI in a statement said, "A review of downtime of ATMs due to cash-outs was undertaken and it was observed that ATM operations affected by cash-outs lead to non-availability of cash and cause avoidable inconvenience to the members of the public."
It further stated, "Therefore, been decided that the banks/ White Label ATM Operators (WLAOs) shall strengthen their systems/ mechanisms to monitor the availability of cash in ATMs and ensure timely replenishment to avoid cash-outs. Any non-compliance in this regard shall be viewed seriously and shall attract a monetary penalty."
Launching the 'Scheme of Penalty for non-replenishment of ATMs', the central bank said that a penalty of Rs.10,000 per ATM will be levied in the event of a cash-out situation for more than 10 hours in a month.
"In the case of white label ATMs, the penalty would be charged to the bank which is meeting the cash requirement of that particular white label ATM. The bank, may, at its discretion, recover the penalty from the white label ATM operator", RBI said.
RBI further said that banks shall submit a system-generated statement on the downtime of ATMs due to non- replenishment of cash to the 'Issue Department' of RBI under whose jurisdiction these ATMs are located.
In case of WLAOs, RBI stated that the banks which are meeting their cash requirement shall furnish a separate statement on behalf of WLAOs on cash-out of such ATMs due to non-replenishment of cash. Such statements shall be submitted for every month within five days of the following month i.e., first such statement for the month of October 2021 shall be submitted on or before November 05, 2021 to the Issue Department concerned.