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Balance enquiry, other non-cash withdrawal actions won't be counted as free ATM transactions

By Vishal S

Mumbai, Aug 14: In a relief to ATM users, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Wednesday told banks that non-cash withdrawal transactions such as balance enquiry, cheque book request, payment of taxes and funds transfer cannot be counted under 'free ATM transactions'.

Banks provide certain number of free transactions at ATMs to their customers and beyond that impose charges.

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The Reserve Bank on Wednesday asked banks not to count failed transactions at ATMs due to technical reasons as part of "free ATM transactions" permitted every month. Besides, use of ATMs for balance enquiry and fund transfers too should be not part of the free transactions facility given to a customer.

The RBI's clarification in this regard comes after it has come to notice of the central bank that transactions that have failed due to technical reasons, non-availability of currency in ATMs are also included in the number of free ATM transactions.

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"It is hereby clarified that transactions which fail on account of technical reasons like hardware and software issues, non-availability of cash, and any other reason attributable to the bank should not be counted as valid ATM transactions for the customer.

"Consequently, no charges therefor shall be levied," the Reserve Bank said.

Further, non-cash withdrawal transactions (such as balance enquiry, cheque book request, payment of taxes, funds transfer), which constitute 'on-us' transactions (when a card is used at an ATM of the bank which has issued the card) shall also not be part of the number of free ATM transactions.

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