Police, bankers meet, discuss ATM safety

Police, bankers meet, discuss ATM safety

Nearly a week after the expiry of deadline set by the police for banks to put in place security mea­sures, as many as 394 out of 3,651 ATM kiosks don’t have security guards and 2,372 don’t have burglar alarms, according to a survey carried out by the police.

Bangalore Police Commissioner Raghavendra H Auradkar on Saturday held a meeting with the representatives of various banks and took stock of security measures at the ATM kiosks in the City. Various banks sought different deadlines to instal burglar alarms and CCTV cameras outside ATM kiosks.

“We had instructed all the banks to deploy guards and instal burglar alarm and CCTV camera outside the kiosks, following the attack on bank employee Jyoti Uday at an ATM kiosk of Corporation Bank near Town Hall. We passed an order on November 28, 2013 and the deadline ended on January 12, 2014. Though the deadline is well past, most of the banks have not yet installed alarms and cameras outside. As many as 1,987 ATMs have CCTV cameras outside and 3,238 have CCTV cameras inside the ATM," Auradkar told mediapersons after the meeting.

“Each bank has sought different deadlines. Some have sought time till the January-end, a few others for two more months and some have asked even for six months. Bankers stated that installing these security equipment requires permission from the top officials and processing the tenders for equipment would take time,” he said.

“Around 45 banks have furnished details of security measures taken in the ATMs. There is no compromise on these measures and we hope that the banks will implement them at the earliest. Currently, the police have not taken any decision, but we will have a meeting with senior police officials and then come to a decision,” said Auradkar.

Santosh Kamath, Convener of the State-Level Bankers’ Committee (SLBC), who was at the meeting, said that the guidelines issued by the police will be followed.

More than 90 per cent of the ATMs have guards. Burglar alarms are in short supply and bankers have placed the order with the vendors. It would take some time, as these alarms will have to be procured from other places. All these require the tender to be processed, and once everything is finalised, the banks will start installing the alarms, he added.

Besides, the bankers claim, CCTV camera would take more space in the hard disk. To expand the memory of the hard disk or to purchase a hard disk with more space would be expensive, so some of the banks are not willing to instal it. But the police sternly objected to it and ordered them to instal the cameras outside the kiosks without any delay.

“This is the sixth meeting with bankers in a year. We are constantly in touch with them, and have been asking them to take actions to ensure safety of people who walk into the kiosks,” said another senior police official.

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