In its notification dated August 18, 2021, the RBI came up with detailed guidelines on the operation of the locker and the liability of both the locker owner and the bank. In the release it said, "It is the responsibility of banks to take all steps for the safety and security of the premises in which the safe deposit vaults are housed.
It has the responsibility to ensure that incidents like fire, theft/ burglary/ robbery, dacoity, building collapse do not occur in the bank's premises due to its own shortcomings, negligence and by any act of omission/commission.
As banks cannot claim that they bear no liability towards their customers for loss of contents of the locker, in instances where loss of contents of locker are due to incidents mentioned above or attributable 14 to fraud committed by its employee(s), the banks' liability shall be for an amount equivalent to one hundred times the prevailing annual rent of the safe deposit locker".
Also, the banks had been asked to put in place a comprehensive revised Board approved policy and SOPs on safe deposit locker facility/safe custody article as per the revised instructions mentioned in the notified release for the same.
Furthermore, bank has to explicitly provide to locker customers that they are not liable to get their locker contents insured
Also read the complete changes shall be put into place from January 1, 2021 in respect of bank locker operations.