Money & Banking

No blind recycling of inward currency, banks told

Vinson Kurian | Updated on April 01, 2020 Published on April 01, 2020

Thiruvananthapuram, April 1

The State-Level Bankers’ Committee (SLBC), Kerala, has directed all member banks that inward currencies at branches should not be recycled straightaway, as part of caution against the spread of Covid-19. Inward currencies may be separately wrapped in packets marked with dates, and should be recycled only after 48 hours (two days), an SLBC notice sent to member banks on Wednesday said.

The SLBC inferred that currency notes are a potential instrument for spreading coronavirus, and cited a State Health Department observation that the virus could sustain itself on infected currency notes for about 12 hours.

The directive against immediate recycling of the currency has to be scrupulously followed, the circular said. “Let us ensure that all possible steps are taken to prevent the spread of Covid-19 virus. All staff members must continue to wear masks and gloves, use sanitisers, and adhere to the social distancing protocol.”

The World Health Organisation has observed that the Novel Coronavirus may spread through currency notes as also credit and debit cards. Banks in India have been advising customers to use contactless payment modes such as UPI, IMPS, RTGS, mobile wallets and net banking in order to stop the spread of the disease.

Published on April 01, 2020

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