Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Give us our Money

Just the last week I filed my first application for Right to Information.

Well, for the blissfully unaware, Right to Information is an act enacted by the GoI making it a right for the citizens to get information from public sector organizations.

I have been active for sometime on online forums, what you may call ’ online activism’. I have been ridiculed too by many for this ‘impotent activism’. But I find myself more aware of my environment. And unless you are aware of your surroundings you may never find a need to react.

Now, for a while, I have been thinking about taking the activism a step ahead. And that day the lightning struck.

I was out in the city market, for the festival day shopping. Palayam is one of the crowded places in the city and there  is ATM run by the State Bank right in the center of it. Even though I have been there many times, I have only been able to get cash out of this ATM  It was not different this day as well. And I had to stand a drizzle to walk half a kilometer for the next ATM. Now walking 500m in a drizzle is not a problem for me. But the amazing amount banks pay to the private vendors to maintain this ATM is a problem.
The Banks pay a hefty amount every year to these private agencies in the name of ‘outsourcing’.

Now this magical word has brought in ‘cost effectiveness’, ‘better resource management’ and ton load goodies from the corporate lexicon. But on ground we see none of these.What happens is the Public Sector Banks dole out the money, from common man’s pocket and provide him services that doesn’t function. 
The irony doesn’t end there. There are provisions in the agreement to invoke penalties for non functioning. The banks are due in the tune of crores from these vendors.But the penalty is never invoked. Next time when your loan is due, try not paying and you can see if the bankers spare you!

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