RBI has provided that Cash-out at any ATM of more than ten hours in a month will attract a flat penalty of ₹ 10,000/- per ATM with effect from 1st October 2021.



DCM (RMMT) No.S153/11.01.01/2021-22

August 10, 2021

The Chairman /
Managing Director & CEO
All Banks

Dear Sir / Madam,

Monitoring of Availability of Cash in ATMs

As you are aware, the Reserve Bank of India has a mandate to issue banknotes and the banks are fulfilling this mandate by dispensing banknotes to the public through their wide network of branches and ATMs. In this connection, a review of downtime of ATMs due to cash-outs was undertaken and it was observed that ATM operations affected by cash-outs lead to non-availability of cash and cause avoidable inconvenience to the members of the public.

2. It has, therefore, been decided that the banks/ White Label ATM Operators(WLAOs) shall strengthen their systems/ mechanisms to monitor availability of cash in ATMs and ensure timely replenishment to avoid cash-outs. Any non-compliance in this regard shall be viewed seriously and shall attract monetary penalty as stipulated in the “Scheme of Penalty for non-replenishment of ATMs” in the Annex. The Scheme shall be effective from October 01, 2021.

Yours faithfully,

(Subrata Das)
Chief General Manager-in-Charge
Encl: As above


Scheme of Penalty for non-replenishment of ATMs

Objective of the Scheme

The Scheme of Penalty for non-replenishment of ATMs has been formulated to ensure that sufficient cash is available to public through ATMs.

Effective Date

The Scheme shall be effective from October 01, 2021. Therefore, banks/ WLAOs should put in place a robust system for monitoring the availability of cash in ATMs and ensure timely replenishment to avoid cash-outs.

Condition for counting instances of cash-outs in an ATM

When the customer is not able to withdraw cash due to non-availability of cash in a particular ATM.


Banks shall submit system generated statement on downtime of ATMs due to non-replenishment of cash to the Issue Department of RBI under whose jurisdiction these ATMs are located. In case of WLAOs, the banks which are meeting their cash requirement shall furnish a separate statement on behalf of WLAOs on cash-out of such ATMs due to non-replenishment of cash. Such statements shall be submitted for every month within five days of the following month i.e., first such statement for the month of October 2021 shall be submitted on or before November 05, 2021 to the Issue Department concerned.

Quantum of Penalty

Cash-out at any ATM of more than ten hours in a month will attract a flat penalty of Rs. 10,000/- per ATM. In case of White Label ATMs (WLAs), the penalty would be charged to the bank which is meeting the cash requirement of that particular WLA. The bank, may, at its discretion, recover the penalty from the WLA operator.

Administration of the Scheme

The Scheme of Penalty will be administered by Issue Departments of the Regional Offices of the Bank. The Competent Authority to impose penalty will be the Officer-in-Charge of the Issue Department of the Regional Office under whose jurisdiction the ATMs are located. Appeal against the decision of the Competent Authority, if required, may be made by the banks/ WLAOs to the Regional Director/Officer-in-Charge of the Regional Office concerned, within one month from the date of imposition of penalty. As the intention of the Scheme is to ensure replenishment of ATMs in time, appeals would be considered only in cases of genuine reasons beyond the control of bank/ WLAOs such as, imposition of lockdown by the State/ Administrative authorities, strike, etc.


More Under Fema / RBI


  1. SASTHAMANI says:

    All customers’ account details should be available with the Bank whenever they are rendered unable to withdraw cash due to NO CASH IN ATM situation. If so, why cannot banks pay the penalty directly to the affected persons, namely, the customers in their accounts? Why pay to RBI who pays undue dividends to the Govt?

  2. shanthaveera. S. says:

    Penalising banks for not maintaining cash in ATMs – good idea.
    Many of the banks simply close the shutters of ATM rooms during day time also
    How to identify and penalise such cases ?
    If a customer has to return from an ATM for no cash reasons, how he is compensated for his spending time, fuel etc. ?
    Customers have to pay many many charges. Banks are charging people for unreasonable , unjustified reasons.

    I feel all these steps taken by RBI are just eyewashing.

    Ultimate scapegoat is customer.

  3. Nasruddin Kothia says:

    Hi, goverment is doing good job, only for them, rbi new for the cashless ATM for 10 hours bank has to pay penalties 0f 1000 to rbi, but what happens to the withdrawal guy who runs from bank to bank. He will be spending petrol money in time of petrol price going rs.106. Even banks charging to deposit and withdrawal of theirs own money can any one explain these theories of the government’s please.

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