Pakistan on Sunday lodged a strong protest against the Indian Government. Pakistani diplomats and high – commission officials were unable to withdraw their full salary from the Indian private bank, RBL. RBL bank converts Indian currency and pays Pakistan’s diplomats in dollars. But post – demonetization, the bank, like all other banks in India, has been facing a currency crunch and is facing delays in exchanging Indian currency. Pakistan said that not allowing its diplomats to withdraw their salaries was in breach of Vienna Protocol. Pakistan has also threatened that in case the matter is not resolved soon, it may consider retaliatory action against salary disbursal for Indian diplomats there. “We are not allowed to withdraw our own salary. It is not a demonetization issue. It appears that it is done more at the instructions of the Indian government”, a senior Pakistan High Commission said. Read more on Pakistan
There was no official response to Pakistan’s charges from the Indian side. But Indian Government officials maintained that the issue was between RBL bank and Pakistan’s diplomats and that the Indian Government had no role to play in the issue. Pakistan’s diplomats were able to draw their tax free salaries in dollars and only had to give reasons for the withdrawal beyond USD $5,000. But now they are not being allowed to withdraw their salaries and have been asked for ‘letters of purpose’ for withdrawal of any dollar amount, according to a Pakistan High Commission official. Co – incidentally, demonetization has resulted in a sharp spike in demand for dollars and other foreign currency, making them scarce.
The demonetization move has been taken to fulfill the larger purpose of ‘neutralizing the abundant Indian money with the terrorists and separatists in Kashmir’ apart from for ‘retrieving the black money in the hands of politicians, realtors and big businessmen in India’. All the banks of India are facing a cash crunch and all the citizens of India are unable to withdraw their full salaries. RBL bank is no exception. Like Indian Government officials said; the issue is between Pakistan’s diplomats and the RBL bank. Pakistan should stop blaming the Indian government squarely for everything. The cash crunch will take its own time to resolve and Pakistan should be patient. The Indian Government has in no way instructed the RBL bank, not to give Pakistan’s diplomats their salaries. Retaliating against Indian diplomats will only make the relationship between the countries sour and will cause lot of problems. Pakistan should be patient and act sensibly. Read more on Startup News
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