New rules for banks, ATMs, railways, airlines from May 1: All you need to know

Many rules including those for banking, ATMs, railways and airlines are going to change from May 1.

Though train and air services have been disrupted due to the lockdown put in place to curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, the rules related to these have also been changed.

Here are some of the rules which will change from May 1:

New SBI interest rate for savings account

Customers of the State Bank of India’s (SBI) savings account will get less interest on deposits of more than Rs 100,000 from May 1. For balances up to Rs 100,000, SBI will offer an interest rate of 3.50% per annum, the lender said. The interest rates on deposits above Rs 100,000 will stand at 3.25%, which will be 2.75% below the repo rate.

This comes after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) cut its repo rate, at which it lends money to commercial banks, by 25 basis points from 6.25% to 6%.

SBI is the first bank to apply savings deposit and short-term loan rates with repo rate by applying the external benchmark rules.

Change in rule for PNB account holders

The Punjab National Bank (PNB) has discontinued its digital wallet from May 1. PNB clients who have been using PNB’s Kitty wallet service can spend the rest of the amount or transfer it through IMPS to another account.

“User can close wallet account only if balance is zero. If the balance is not zero, the user has to either spend money or send it to other accounts using IMPS,” PNB has said.

“When the customer wants to change the registered mobile in the bank, he has to first spend the balance amount in the wallet and close the wallet. Otherwise, he will not be able to change his mobile number in the branch.”

Pensioners will get full pension

The Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) will start giving out full pensions from May to those who opted for commutation at the time of retirement. A commutation is an option given to pensioners to convert a part of their monthly pension into an upfront lump sum payment at the time of their retirement.

The full pension is restored after some time, 15 years in this case. The government, in February, had notified the restoration.

The move will benefit 630,000 pensioners every month and will cost the government Rs 1,500 crore at a time when it is facing a crunch due to the coronavirus outbreak and the related nationwide lockdown.

ATM rules

A new system will be put in place for ATMs to prevent coronavirus infection. According to the new rule, an ATM will be cleaned to make it infection-free after every use. It has been started in Ghaziabad and Chennai. In a hotspot, now the municipal corporation will sanitise an ATM twice a day. If sanitation rules are not followed, the ATM chamber will be sealed.

Boarding station rules

Even though the trains are not operating due to the lockdown, Indian Railways has changed some of its rules from May 1. This rule will be applicable as soon as the services are restored.

According to the new rule, passengers can change their boarding station up to four hours before the reservation chart is released. According to existing rules, a passenger could change his boarding station 24 hours before the date of travel.

However, if a passenger doesn’t travel and cancel their ticket after changing the boarding station, they won’t get any refund.

Airline rules

From May 1, passengers of Air India will not have to pay any extra charge on cancellation of tickets. The company has abolished the cancellation charge from May 1 in case passengers cancel or change their ticket within 24 hours of booking it.

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