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Government Extends Concessions: Rs 500, Rs 1,000 Notes Valid For Key Utilities Till Nov 14
With banks struggling to cope with rush to get alternative currency, the government on Friday night extended use of old defunct 500 and 1,000 notes for paying household utility bills, fuel, taxes and fees and purchases from co-operative stores by another 72 hours to November 14
Photo Credit : PTI
With banks struggling to cope with rush to get alternative currency, the government on Friday (11 November) night extended use of old defunct 500 and 1,000 notes for paying household utility bills, fuel, taxes and fees and purchases from co-operative stores by another 72 hours to November 14.
It added transactions at consumer co-operative stores like Kendriya Bhandar with valid ID proof and court fee to the list of utilities where the old high denomination currency notes will be accepted as mode of payment.
Also, payments towards utility bills will be restricted to only individuals or households for arrears and/or current bills. No advance payments will be allowed.
While withdrawing Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes from the night of November 8-9, the government had allowed use of the old currency at government hospitals, railway ticketing, public transport, airline ticketing at airports, milk booths, crematoria/burial grounds and petrol pumps for 72 hours.
This list was later expanded to include payments for metro rail tickets, highway and road toll, purchase of medicines on doctor prescription from the government and private pharmacies, LPG gas cylinders, railway catering, electricity and water bills and ASI monument entry tickets.
The time limit set was to expire mid-night tonight, but it has now been extended by another 72 hours, an official statement said.
"The government has been closely monitoring the implementation of the decision. Considering various representations received from different quarters in the matter, it has now been decided that the existing exemptions may be extended until the expiry of November 14, 2016," it said.
From the list of exempted utilities, highway toll plazas have been removed as the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has already freed national highways of any toll charges till November 14.
"There is enough cash with RBI. Supply of cash to bank branches and ATMs is being stepped up gradually," the statement said.
Banks have struggled to cope with the rush of people keen to exchange the defunct notes and withdraw smaller denomination and new Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 currency notes.
Only half of the ATMs went live today after the two-day break, but ran out of cash within hours. Banks too saw huge queues and server breakdowns in exchanging old notes and issuing fresh ones.
Public utility bills include only household bills. Court fee will also be allowed to be paid in old 500 and 1,000 rupee notes.
Old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes will be accepted for payment of fees, charges, taxes, penalty to central and state governments, including municipalities and local bodies.
Such old notes will also be accepted for payment of utility charges like water and electricity.
The official said the old notes were allowed to be accepted for highway toll payment.