Bank customers scramble to renew agreement as new locker rules kick in


A new locker rule that has come into effect for existing bank customers this January has led to utter confusion among them, leading to long queues for stamp paper at several bank branches, Live Mint reported Monday.

With the new regulation coming into force, most customers are now rushing to their banks to renew their locker agreements. While banks say they have been urging their customers to avoid last-minute delays, some said the banks began alerting them very close to the deadline. The regulation says at the time of allotment of the locker, the bank will have to enter into an agreement with the customer “on a paper duly stamped”.

People have also complained about the divergence in the value of the stamp paper required for agreement renewal and whether the banks will provide these. The State Bank of India (SBI) clarified in a tweet on January 2 that the value of the stamp paper differed depending on the Stamp Acts of the respective states.

The regulation has been in the making for some time, and the has been rolling it out gradually. In August 2021, the revised regulations on maintaining . These regulations were applicable to new customers from January last year. However, for existing bank customers, these norms have come into effect from January this year.

The central bank has asked the banks to put in place board-approved agreements with customers for safe deposit lockers and allowed them to adopt a model locker agreement framed by the Indian Banks’ Association (IBA), according to the Mint report.

The report cited an employee of a state-run bank in Kolkata as saying that the bank had run out of stamp papers. “We are asking customers to get it themselves. Some are heading to post offices, but they, too, are unable to meet the demand,” the employee said on the condition of anonymity.


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