Banking
MONEYLIFE IMPACT: RBI seeks reply from BoM for failed ATM transactions
After a Moneylife story, Pune-based Kiran Chaptekar not only received Rs30,000 that he lost in failed ATM transactions, but RBI has asked Bank of Maharashtra for an explanation
 

Last week, Moneylife story on `Money lost in Bank of Maharashtra ATMs’, had highlighted the plight of a father in Pune, who visited two ATMs to withdraw Rs30,000 for his daughter’s admission but did not receive the cash though the entire amount was debited by the bank from his account.

 

The story had appeared on 11th June, while the father, Kiran Chaptekar was made to fill forms for recovery of his money. (Read: Money lost in Bank of Maharashtra ATMs). That is, for a good nine days, Chaptekar was kept on the edge, for the money debited was quite large.
 
By a strange coincidence, the day Moneylife story was published, that is, on 11th June, the same evening at around 5.45pm, Rs30,000 was quietly credited into Chaptekar’s account. He did not receive any transaction alert but found out about this when he visited the bank, that evening. The bank official also told him that, it is mandatory for them to credit the amount within one week and she has met the deadline. 
 
This is again a Moneylife impact, as it is a result of several stories that were carried since the first one in 2011 that made the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to issue necessary directions to banks. For this, Pune-based Sharad Phadke, who died recently, also triggered off the alert by invoking Right to Information (RTI) Act.
 
On 16th June, the Karve Road Branch of Bank of Maharashtra, has been reportedly asked by the RBI to give explanation about the incident involving Chaptekar.  “I received a call from my bank requesting me to visit the Karve Road Branch, where I have my account, and give a statement in writing that my Rs30,000 have been credited within the mandatory one week  period,’’ Chaptekar said.
 
He was told by the Branch Manager that his written communication is essential as RBI has questioned them on the basis of the Moneylife article and are under pressure as the Bank is getting a bad name.
 
We appreciate Chaptekar for not taking the matter lying down, as thousands of customers are bearing the brunt of lethargy of banks to credit back the wrongly debited amount, quickly. With technology at their beck and call, banks should be able to credit the amount within seconds and a software to this effect is available. It is being used by several private banks.
 
(Vinita Deshmukh is consulting editor of Moneylife, an RTI activist and convener of the Pune Metro Jagruti Abhiyaan. She is the recipient of prestigious awards like the Statesman Award for Rural Reporting which she won twice in 1998 and 2005 and the Chameli Devi Jain award for outstanding media person for her investigation series on Dow Chemicals. She co-authored the book “To The Last Bullet - The Inspiring Story of A Braveheart - Ashok Kamte” with Vinita Kamte and is the author of “The Mighty Fall”.)
 

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COMMENTS

A S Bhat

2 years ago

Congratulations Moneylife on bringing latest updates and your campaigns against various fraudulent entities' schemes. You are doing a great job Mrs. vinita deshmukh madam and Mrs sucheta dalal madam. Carry on. I like your articles and a regular reader.

TIHARwale

2 years ago

Vinita Deshmukh please find RTI to find out whether money was in divert bin only. Also the the dates when cash was replenished in the two concerned ATMs before and after the non delivery. this will give an idea whether re-credit was automatic or re-credit while satisfying the ATM user but a cover up regarding the cash verification guideline adhered or violated during cash replenishment of ATMs in Bank of Maharashtra

Vijay Chandar

2 years ago

Not sure whether it is a story about a bank's service deficiency or a self congratulatory piece about money life and its contributors. Please restrict yourself to the event and let readers congratulate the site, if they find it worthy.

REPLY

Sucheta Dalal

In Reply to Vijay Chandar 2 years ago

Often we have people asking us whether our efforts lead to any results at all!

When they do, we think it is important to inform people. We are a tiny media outfit and this is a matter of survival.

If it upsets you so much to read this "self congratulation" then humbly request you to unsubscribe.

In any case, you are reading this effort FREE.

Have a good life.

Sucheta

Who Cares for ‘R-urban’ Consumers?
While BSNL Internet service in rural areas is the pits, private ISPs, like Tata DoCoMo and Airtel, are simply not interested
 
This writer has been a Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) landline and broadband Internet customer for over 10 years now. For the past few years, I have been living in a village called Parkala, which is a hop, skip and jump away from the educational, medical and financial hub of Manipal, close to the temple town of Udupi in coastal Karnataka.
 
As a typical Internet addict—and with no TV connection (cable or otherwise) whatsoever—most of my waking hours are spent browsing the net. This is also my main link with the world and my extended family and friends. I read major newspapers and online news portals, some on a daily basis and others occasionally whenever a link from Facebook or Twitter lead to the stories; my online viewing was mainly the garrulous Arnab Goswami, until a few months back when he became unbearable for my family who, in turn, threatened me with dire consequences if peace in the house was disturbed!
 
And throughout all this, bearing the pathetic service from BSNL, the government’s communications provider.
 
My troubles with BSNL are ancient, almost ever since I took the monopoly service. I had a long litany of complaints, relating mainly to the Internet connection and, occasionally to landline disruption. I have also seen the pathetic state of BSNL exchanges where, I am told, cannibalisation of equipment was a frequent occurrence. If there was a problem in one exchange and the complaints became intolerable, the ‘card’ from the exchange was swapped with a functional one from another exchange.
 
Often, copper wires were the culprits, the weather being blamed by the linemen, who had to face the brunt of subscribers’ ire. In my locality, overloaded trucks used to frequently bring down the phone wires.
 
Of course, on several occasions, it was the ‘Chinese-made’ ‘card’ problem at the exchange itself. But no one was willing to accept it officially. Many times, the relations between the linemen and the district sub-divisional officers (telecom), or SDOTs, whom I had to contact in exasperation, were strained. One young SDOT told me: “We cannot force the linemen to respond immediately; because they will immediately complain against us for caste discrimination.” It is another matter that the linemen used to frequently grumble that the SDOTs put pressure on them unnecessarily. There was this claim of perennial shortage of staff as well.
 
If it was the shortage of staff on one side, it was also the availability of spare ‘cards’, cables and other equipment. If a lineman told the SDOT that the cable needed to be replaced, the process would be caught in bureaucratic tangles.
 
And, sometimes, they used to blame the modem also! Once, I took it to the deputy general manager’s office for testing; the person there did not even see this modem brand and said it was not functional. The dealer, from whom I had purchased, tested it and said it was OK. Mysteriously, the next day, the Internet connection was back to normal.
 
On another occasion, I took the modem to the exchange and they said it was perfectly fine and blamed the Chinese ‘card’. The new SDOT came once to my house and promised to come again and do a comprehensive check. He did not. This was about two-three months ago. To cut the story short, my BSNL broadband Internet connection is on, more as an exception than a rule!
 
Thus, I started looking for an alternative service-provider. I looked at Google Guru and short-listed two: Airtel and Tata DoCoMo, who have a presence in the area.
 
I contacted Airtel first through the call centre number given on their website. After all, the sweet talk, right from their offices in Delhi to their branch office in Manipal, I was given an answer: Sorry, there is no connection available in your area. Mind you, my house is just 3km away from their branch office! I also happened to speak to an Airtel executive, who told me that the local manager was not interested in expanding the services and they lost many consumers.
 
A couple of months ago, I saw Tata DoCoMo’s service at a local three-star hotel, where, thanks to the owner, I was given access to the Internet in the manager’s office. The speeds were good—compared to BSNL’s service—and I was impressed. But not as satisfactory as the service I had in Hyderabad in 2011-12, where I used to pay just about Rs1,000 per month for a 10MbPS connection and that, too, with the rare breakdowns.
 
So I looked up Tata DoCoMo’s website and called them. After three-four phone calls, I was told that they only provide service in apartment buildings, where at least 80% residents agree to subscribe. Besides, they averred, I live in an area where there did not have any lines!
 
Few days back, on 5 June 2015, I put out a series of tweets regarding my grouse with BSNL (they did not respond) and how villages and small towns (R-urban) are way beyond the radars of these big companies (and not only telecom service-providers, but by almost all major FMCG companies), who treat us villagers as guinea pigs and dump third-rate goods and services on us.
 
Responses from the telco giants on Twitter were immediate, followed by phone calls. Yet, I bet my favourite mysorepak (a very popular sweet) that I will not get a connection from either Airtel or Tata DoCoMo in a hurry. And, lo and behold! At the end of the day, I ended up saving a few dozen rupees!
 
“We don’t have a service there,” was the common thread among the two.
 
Meanwhile, I plan to attend the BSNL Telephone Adalat, which will be held in the third week of June 2015 but am keeping my fingers crossed. Even in the first week of June 2015, there was a ‘server issue’ at BSNL and services were affected all over Karnataka for four or five days.
 
Footnote: Dear Mr Narendra Modi: If you happen to read this piece, let me say this. I doubt if your idea of ‘Digital India’ will ever take off; with such disdain for consumers, it might be a tall order. I don’t think it will happen during your stewardship of this nation as its Pradhan Sewak.
 
(Shrikant N Shenoy has been a journalist since 1980, having worked in Mumbai, Hyderabad, Dubai. He launched a news portal and an online Konkani language channel from Manipal, Udupi, but ran out of money. In 2011, he successfully launched an English newspaper with five editions simultaneously on a shoe-string budget. He tweets as @udupinet.)

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COMMENTS

Mohamed Abbas Ali

2 years ago

Why not use CDMA data cards, they are relatively cheaper. And offers better connectivity. Been living in small town Pollachi TamilNay and I get a decent network where there is no 3 star hotel!

Well I agree with BSNL quality of service, even their CDMA 3g datacards have frequent problems, as it shall not be impacted by wires being cut, still doesnt work!

vishal navlani

2 years ago

Dear Shrikant N Shenoy,

I salute you for the efforts you have put in to get your way. I must say that you are very process oriented and have found the right way to get your work done. This is a learning lesson for people who cannot get their work done and put up their hands in despair.

I seriously urge you to give me some task in your struggle so that I learn something from you. You can delegate me some task to communicate with authorities. My name is Vishal and currently residing in Bangalore. My mobile number is 8904307015 and mail id is [email protected]. I have experience of getting my work done using RTI. If I can be of any use to your struggle then I will consider myself very much honored and blessed.

TIHARwale

2 years ago

In Delhi MTNL is already gone to dogs. Lines man is aged so will not bring ladder to climb poles. so overhead cables will be pulled down frequently and will remain unattended

MOHAN SIROYA

2 years ago

Forget about Private Telecom Operators whose prime motive is to earn more money. But like BSNL, let the State arm MTNL follow the suit . If this happens thousands will opt for MTNL service in Mumbai and Delhi ,at least as an additional SIM to be used when roaming.

Dahyabhai S Patel

2 years ago

Dr. Mr. Shenoy, take hard copy of this article of yours and send it to Pradhan Sevak, Pradhan Santree, 56cm-Breast (cm, centimeter, because we are following metric system, and not FPS i.e. Foot, Pound, Second, and every Indian is supposed to follow it, and particularly CMs and PM as they are bound by the oath they are taking while assumimg their offices, so 56inch breast is simply ruled out.), Common Man (as he liked to be called when he was Gujarat CM). Do you believe him and his hype to hide his inferiority complex (to always show superiority)?!!!Alternatively, you maight use FB, Tweeter, PMO online etc.. but do send.

SuchindranathAiyerS

2 years ago

BSNL doesn't care for urban customer either. BSNL is Bharath Sarkar Ki Samoathi. It exists purely for the pleasure, pomp, pel, perpetuation and perversions of it employees and over lords. I finally lost patience and chucked it up I am now on ACT. Phew! What a relief!

Most US adults back ban on powdered alcohol: Survey
Driven by concerns of potential misuse among underage youth, majority of adults in the US favour a ban on recently approved powdered alcohol which can create an instant cocktail when mixed with water, reveals a survey.
 
Packaged in travel-friendly pouches, the new alcohol-on-the-go product is set to be launched in flavours of distilled spirits like vodka, rum and mixed drinks.
 
According to the University of Michigan's C.S. Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health, 60 percent of the US adults favour a complete ban of powdered alcohol in their states, while 84 percent support prohibiting online sales of the product.
 
"The product's makers tout powdered alcohol as improving convenience for people who enjoy the outdoors and others who want to travel light with alcoholic beverages," said Matthew Davis, director of the National Poll on Children's Health and professor of paediatrics and internal medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School.
 
"Given that several states are considering legislation about powdered alcohol, our poll looked at what the public thinks about this new product. The majority of adults agree that powdered alcohol may spell trouble for young people." 
 
Only about a third of adults had heard about powdered alcohol when the poll was conducted in May 2015.
 
The survey revealed that 90 percent of adults are concerned that powdered alcohol will be misused by people under 21.
 
The product is set to launch this summer but some states, including Louisiana, South Carolina and Vermont, have already banned it.
 
"Concerns of the public are important to understand as lawmakers across the country consider legislation to restrict or ban the use of powdered alcohol in their states," Davis said.

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