More than Rs 2,400 crore is lying as unclaimed deposits in the over one crore bank accounts across the country, the RBI has said in an RTI reply.

According to the data revealed by the RBI, the State Bank group has over Rs 233 crore unclaimed funds in its 10 lakh accounts, public sector banks over Rs 1,900 crore in about 86 lakh accounts, private sector banks over Rs 233 crore in more than 14 lakh accounts and foreign banks over Rs 69 crore in over 46,000 accounts till December 31, 2011.

The RBI in a circular had asked banks to treat savings as well as current accounts as inoperative or dormant if there are no transactions in the account for over a period of two years, it said.

According to the RBI, there should not be any charge for activation of an inoperative account and the bank’s interest on savings accounts should be credited on regular basis whether the account is operative or not.

If a fixed deposit receipt matures and proceeds are unpaid, the amount left unclaimed with the bank will attract savings bank rate of interest, the RBI told activist, Mr Subhash Agrawal, in response to his RTI query.

It had also asked the banks to make efforts to find the whereabouts of the customers or legal heirs in respect to existing accounts which have already been transferred to the ‘inoperative accounts’ ledger.

(This article was published on July 29, 2012)
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