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Stop using indelible ink in banks: EC to Finance Ministry

Do not use indelible ink in banks: Election Commission


The Election Commission has written to the Finance Ministry, on Friday asking them not to use the indelible ink in banks as it might further create problems in the states, which are gearing up for the polls, as per the reports.

While Uttar Pradesh and Punjab are heading for the assembly polls early next year, states like Madhya Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh and West Bengal have constituencies where by-elections will be held on November 19. There are further reports that the ink is being applied on the right hand of the customers to avoid some confusion during elections, when the ink will be applied on the left hand.

Stop using indelible ink in banks: EC to Finance Ministry
Do not use indelible ink in banks: Election Commission

Metro cities have started applying indelible ink

This week, banks in some selected metro cities have started applying indelible ink on the index finger of the right hand of customers to further ensure one-time exchange of old Rs 500, Rs 1000 currency notes of up to Rs 4500.

The decision was further taken by the government to ensure that black money operators would refrain from using other people’s accounts to exchange or deposit notes.

On Wednesday, 11 branches of the country’s largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) and select branches of Bank of India, Canara Bank and the RBI’s Delhi office has started using the ink on the fingers of people exchanging old notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000.

A top official of the Karnataka government-run Mysore Paints and Varnish Ltd (MPVL), which is the only recognized producer of the indelible ink in India, said that it had further received orders for 2.9 lakh 5-ml bottles, each costing Rs 116, from various banks by Wednesday evening.

According to the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) issued to the banks on Wednesday, the indelible ink can be also applied by the cashier or any other official designated by the bank before the notes are given to the customer so that while the exchange of notes is further taking place, a few seconds lapses which would allow the ink to dry up and prevent removal of ink.

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