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EXCLUSIVE: Amid Indian Currency Mayhem, Kashmir Still Banks Upon Old Currency Notes

At this point of time when the people of India are grappling to get their high denomination currency, Kashmir is still using the old currency notes.

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A shop in Kashmir. (Representational image) Pixabay

Srinagar, November 12, 2016: At this point of time when the people of India are grappling to get their high denomination currency exchanged in the banks by standing in long queues for hours at stretch, Kashmir is still using the old currency notes.

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Unlike the rest of the country, people of Kashmir were already banking upon their limited cash due to the unrest of more than 100 days. So, a small group of shopkeepers in Kashmir has come forward to help the people having a limited cash by accepting old currency notes of Rs500 and Rs1000 in exchange of the goods they need.

Due to the unrest, the banks open for a limited period of time, that is only for a few hours. For which, exchanging of money isn’t going quite smooth for the people of the valley.

A shopkeeper, Ali Mohammad who sells essential commodities in Sehri Khas, Srinagar, says, “By December, I would certainly not have more than 2.5 lakh cash in hand, so if a few people are handing over notes of Rs 500 or Rs 1000 it won’t really affect me as such. If at all my amount of cash reaches 2 lakh, I’ll go and deposit it.”

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He further added, “It doesn’t matter whether I deposit the money or the person himself does it. Rather, it is better if I do it because it will be some help to those who are out of cash.”

Shopkeepers are also providing assistance in general, to help out poor rural people those who don’t have a bank account. They are accepting and exchanging the old currency notes for them.

Plastic money or e-money is not even an option for the people of Kashmir, as the internet too have suffered a lot due the unrest and is not in proper working conditions.

An organization of trade bodies, Kashmir Economic Alliance’s Chairman, Muhammad Yasin Khan said, “We have already suffered in the uprising of more than 120 days, who so ever is accepting the old currency notes, it is their own choice and for the sake of humanity. There is no compulsion from the trade bodies on them.”

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He further added, “In view of the circumstances of Kashmir, some special concession should be given by the government to deposit the money as the banks remain open hardly for a few hours in a day.”

– by Pinaz Kazi of NewsGram with inputs from Irfan Rashid. Twitter: @PinazKazi

  • Ruchika Kumari

    Shopkeepers are doing so only for the sake of humanity…..ok its fine…but we have to respect the decision of our PM

  • Diksha Arya

    Great work by the shopkeepers….

Next Story

Snowfall in Jammu and Kashmir to Help Bring Pollution Down in Neighbouring States

Lotus said early snowfall in happening for the second year in succession in Kashmir

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Snowfall, Jammu, Kashmir
The snowfall will peak in the night on November 7, MET said in a statement. Pixabay

Jammu and Kashmir is likely to receive snowfall in the next two days, which could help bring pollution down in neighbouring states.

“The snowfall accompanied by winds will bring down the particulate matter in the air to great extend,” Sonam Lotus, Director of the J&K Meteorological Department, told IANS.

“The active western disturbance and its interaction with cyclone MAHA, currently located in East Central Arabian Sea, is likely to cause moderate to heavy snowfall and rain in plains of J&K, and Ladakh during November 6-8. The snowfall will peak in the night on November 7,” MET said in a statement.

Lotus said early snowfall in happening for the second year in succession in Kashmir. “It’s good for agriculture, but could damage standing crops,” he said.

Snowfall, Jammu, Kashmir
“The snowfall accompanied by winds will bring down the particulate matter in the air to great extend,” Sonam Lotus, Director of the J&K Meteorological Department, told IANS. Wikimedia Commons

The MET has alerted the J&K administration about the likely disruption in road transport, especially through passes, like Zojilla, and on the Srinagar-Jammu-Leh-Manali Highway and Mughal road, due to landslides, low temperature and heavy snowfall.

The Jammu-Srinagar National Highway is the main link between Kashmir and the rest of the country.

Last year, the highway remained blocked for several days, cutting Kashmir from rest of the country and causing shortage of essentials in the Valley. Normally, the government stocks up essential supplies ahead of the winter, especially for areas like Tangdhar, Gurez and Ladakh. Most of these areas remain disconnected due to heavy snowfall.

Last year also, Kashmir witnessed snowfall in November. Normally, snowfall begins after November on the upper reaches of Kashmir. The 40-day peak winter season called ‘Chila-e-Kalan’ begins from December 20. Snowfall during the period last longer and is a major source for drinking water in summers.

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The lack of adequate snowfall causes shortage of drinking water in Kashmir in some areas, especially those that are not connected to the drinking water system. (IANS)