Mumbai: Bank account holders can continue to use their old format cheques for another three months as RBI has extended the deadline for banks to issue new cheques with uniform security features till March next year.
The Reserve Bank in a notification today said, "Taking into consideration representations, it has been decided to extend the time up to March 31, 2013 for banks to ensure withdrawal of non-CTS 2010 Standard cheques and replace them with CTS-2010 Standard cheques."
While most of the banks have confirmed that they are issuing only multi-city or payable at par CTS-2010 standar cheques at present, representations have been received from various stakeholders requesting for extension of the time beyond December 31, 2012, it said.
As per earlier direction to all banks, RBI had fixed December 31 as the last date for phasing out non-CTS (Cheque Truncation System) 2010 Standard cheques.
The homogeneity in security features of CTS 2010 standard cheques will act as deterrent against frauds, and the fixed field placement specifications facilitate straight-through-processing at drawee banks' end through the use of optical or image character recognition technology.
The introduction of new cheque standards 'CTS 2010' was warranted on account of several developments in the cheque clearing namely growing use of multi-city and payable-at-par cheques at any branch of a bank, increasing popularity of speed clearing for local processing of outstation cheques and implementation of grid based CTS for image-based cheque processing etc.
RBI said it may be noted that the residual non-CTS-2010 Standard cheques that get presented in the clearing system beyond this extended period will continue to be accepted for the clearing but will be cleared at less frequent intervals.
The modalities, charges applicable if any, etc. are being discussed with stakeholders and a separate communication will follow in this regard, it added.