Dagapela, in the central district of Dagana, has only two Automated Teller Machines (ATM) and it is down most of the time.
The Bank of Bhutan’s ATM has been out of service for more than a month and Bhutan Development Bank Limited’s (BDBL) ATM is offline most of the time.
Bimal D Sunar, a resident of Dagapela said, “We have a very serious issue in Dagapela, we have only two ATMs and most of the time, the ATMs are not operational or offline. We do have MBOB and B-Wallet services but again it doesn’t work all the time”.
He said that BOB has recently opened agent banking at Tashiding gewog, which is benefiting the people of the region but Tashiding Gewog is 15 km from Dagapela.
A teacher at Dagapela Middle Secondary School said, “I feel like we are living a life we used to live few years ago, the only way we could get some cash would be to trudge into town to visit a bank where we have to wait in long queue”.
He also said,” Today in urban centres like Thimphu and Phuentsholing, people are used to seeing ATMs in convenience stores, hospitals or at the local pub. This machine plays a vital role in providing their community with easy access to cash we would like to have ATM nearby or at least ATMs that are operating”.