Public lender State Bank of India (SBI) has said it will charge fees for cash withdrawals beyond four free transactions in a month from customers with basic savings bank deposit accounts ( BSBD).
The bank also announced that a fee will be levied on checkbook transactions in excess of 10 sheets per year.
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WHAT IT MEANS FOR SBI CUSTOMERS
The bank’s announcement is only for ATM and checkbook transactions and no new fees will be levied on mobile and net banking services.
SBI will levy a fee ranging from Rs 15 to Rs 75 as “additional value added services” for the BSBD account from July 1, 2021. However, non-financial transactions and transfer transactions will be free at its branches, distributors automatic ticket machines, CDMs (cash dispensers) for BSBD account holders.
The bank said it would charge Rs 15 plus GST per cash withdrawal for transactions at bank branches, SBI ATMs or at other banks’ ATMs in excess of 4 free cash withdrawals.
“Fees will be recovered beyond 4 free cash withdrawal transactions (including ATMs and branches),” SBI said.
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The bank also said the first 10 checkbook departures would be free within a year. Thereafter, 10-sheet checkbooks will be charged at Rs 40 plus GST; a 25 sheet checkbook at Rs 75 plus GST and an emergency checkbook will attack the charge of Rs 50 plus GST for 10 sheets or part thereof.
This, however, will not apply to seniors who have been exempt from checkbook services.
WHAT ARE BSBD ACCOUNTS?
Basic savings bank deposits or BSBD accounts can be opened by anyone after valid KYC documentation. Such accounts help people start saving without any burdens or fees and are aimed primarily at the poorer segments of society.
However, the fees on these accounts appear to be increasing. A recent study by IIT-Bombay found that the public lender made over Rs 300 crore through service charges of nearly 12 crore from BSBD account holders during the period 2015-2020.
The study further observed that SBI levying a fee of Rs 17.70 for each debit transaction in excess of four from BSBD account holders was not “reasonable”. Compared to SBI, the second largest public sector lender, Punjab National Bank (PNB), collected Rs 9.9 crore on BSBD 3.9 crore accounts during the same period.
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