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Demonetization- The Story Of An Indian Banker

Disclaimer: BEWARE! Bhakts will find it offensive (A LOT!!)

 

Okay. I apologize for being so late in putting forth my views on this whole ‘demonetization saga’. But I had to get hold of all the niche details of this drama that is costing an array of problems to the aam aadmi (pun intended).

 

First of all, it started on 8th of November when I was happily scrolling through my Instagram feeds and it has taken a toll on me ever since. So, I’m gonna jot down some of the (many!) obvious loopholes in this so-called ‘bravest ever step taken’ by a ’56-inch chest guy’.

 

  1. The Black Money Loophole: Duh! Bundles of cash lying in peoples mattresses and tijoris is now a piece of sh*t. And, I’m not the one boasting of this achievement. The writers of the demonetization saga claim so. As an Indian banker, I’ve had first hand experience of most, if not all, black money holders using their servants and their wives and their kids to put their sh*t together. And I’m not even kidding, mitron. We, the bankers (slash puppets) are helpless. Also, I was very little when I heard of the phrase that goes like this- All that glitters is not GOLD. And on 8th of November, I got a solid proof. All that glitters is not GOLD, it is BLACK! Black money, white money, gold money. It’s all equal now.
  2. The Black Money Loophole-2: I mean since November the 8th I’ve heard so much of this black money ragas that I can’t just put forth the facts in one point now, do I? So, it is not a banker secret that people are hiring daily wage workers at near about 450-500 bucks per day to get their black money exchanged. Now, how many of these poor workers will the 56-inch chest get hold of? 0.1%? Okay, I’m underrating him. 0.2%. I can’t rise the stakes more than this, please.
  3. The V.V.I.P. Loophole: So, my brother is currently pursuing his grad and still got some 10,000 bucks of old notes. But, the Adanis and Ambanis and Tatas and Birlas own something the size of Lesotho (it’s a country, in case the Bhakts don’t know) and still I spot Rajus and Ramus and Sonus and Monus in the long queues. Hmm. Guess these corporate people only use Bitcoins or maybe they are the face of PayTM! Right.
  4. The Aam Aadmi Loophole: On 10th of November I entered my branch and a middle-aged man came running to me saying that his daughter is sick and he needs to get medicines for her. He even showed me the prescription in case you Bhakts cry a foul. It was early in the morning and we managed to help him. But after that we’ve heard a lot of sad tales and even the newspapers are filled with the stories of the poor and the not-so-poor that they are suffering the most in this money crisis. I read news of how elderly people die standing in long queues. Once, I tried to help an octogenarian by depositing his money from the backside and the customers started shouting. It took me a while to explain them that it isn’t my money and that the elderly man had some kind of knee problem. Only after looking at him they cooled down. But what kind of a ruthless PM sends his 90 year old mother to stand in a queue? I’m amazed that people chant his name and nobody came forward to even stand in the queue for his mother. Thank god for photo-ops 😉
  5. The 2,000 Note Loophole: I mean what a breakthrough, man! What a breakthrough! Printing a 2,000 bucks note for a nation that majorly constitutes of lower middle class people. That deserves a slow clap. Okay, so next time when I go to buy cheeni and daal and some chai-patti, I should give a 2,000 rupee note for some 200-250 rupees bill. Okay. And I should enlighten you all that people are reluctant to take 2,000 rupee note but they have to because of point number 6.
  6. The Management Loophole: So, yeah. Point number 6. The currency-crunch. From the stroke of midnight, all 500 and 1000 rupee notes will become blah blah blah. And we’ll have new currency. But where the hell is new currency? Every single day we are telling customers that we don’t have cash. Yes, banks, where you get your money deposited and where you should get your withdrawals, are out of cash. Common sight, is it?
  7. The Banker Loophole: They wanna kill us. Literally. I don’t know what it was but on 10th of November itself I came home with 102 degree fever. We have worked overtime. We work on the Sundays. We are still working overtime, even though the working hours are from 10-4. We are working late. But we are not getting anything, I mean of course with the exception of abusive hurls and in some cases manhandling by the customers.
  8. The Miracle Loophole: I know this government came into being just because of its promises of miracles and it is keeping up with its promises in its own cute,childish ways, but it should learn how to take criticism from two of the most learned economists of our times- Dr Manmohan Singh Ji and Raghuram Rockstar Rajan. Raghuram Rajan objected to demonetization even before it was being looked into as a possibility. He clearly told the loopholes that I explained to you in detail. And I’m amazed how each one of his apprehensions or rather arguments are coming true one after the other. And what can I say about Dr Manmohan Singh Ji. In his very own humble way, he showed the lost government the path to make good the damage it has already done, to the country, to the banking system and most importantly to the common man whose sufferings don’t seem to end.

Well, people are hailing the decision of their PM. But only those who own smartphones and who voice their opinion on social media through memes and tweets. But, I urge you all to reach out to those who really got effected by this money crunch. They don’t own smartphones to buy groceries online through their credit cards. All they want is simple life, and that my mitron, is a distant dream.

 

P.S.- You can go ahead and have a good debate of how I don’t love my country 😉

 

XOXO,

H

 

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The Future Of Bank Of Baroda

Today marks the 109th anniversary of Bank of Baroda. A lot has changed since then. Ledger books, a pile of registers, calculation wizards etc. have become obsolete. Today, we rely on just one thing, i.e. Finacle, our software that lets us do anything we are authorized to do. Life in banking is easy, just like a cakewalk.

 

We have revolutionized the way people use their banking services. We have ATM services, cash deposit machines, passbook printing machines, mobile banking, internet banking, electronic cheques etc. to point out a few. We are foraying into an era that is anything but free (time wise). People want everything in split-seconds. They’ve got Siri to guide them into anything they aspire to do. From buying a hamburger to booking a flight, Siri has got us all covered. Facebook is keeping the world connected with just one click. Twitter is letting us speak on the issues that matter to us. Instagram is letting us share our memories. Snapchat is helping us to be either a dog or a Hawaiian princess. So, what is our Bank of Baroda doing to keep up with the pace the world is moving at?

Well, for starters, it introduced a pocket-free wallet app called Baroda M-Clip on its 109th anniversary, which lets you transfer money, make bill payments, recharge, make mVisa payments, shop, gift, link debit/credit card, see transaction history and what not! Bank of Baroda sure knows how to woo the customers of the 21st century. But is it enough? Is it really using technology judiciously?

 

If you ask me, I got one straight answer- NADA! BOB is India’s first international and the biggest Public-sector bank in India. But it is not doing just enough. A century old bank with base all over the world must have a potential to see the changing trends around the world. Bitcoin has been here for quite some while now. PayTM is giving a tough competition to the biggest banks. Even Snapchat is not shying away from giving financial services, since it introduced SnapCash. So, banks have no choice but to feel threatened. There are people who are about to take over the arena of traditional banking. Now, when I ask you whether BOB is doing enough for its 21st century customers, what will be your answer? Nada, obviously.

 

So, what can we Barodians really do? For starters, use our strength. Our strength lies in the large base that we’ve created all around the world. We have entered the remote parts of our country and yet managed to somehow touch the skies with branches in London and New York. We KNOW the people of this world. Yes, not just this country, but this world. We have got our branches even in California, the state which houses the Silicon Valley, the technology haven of the world. Silicon Valley creates what you can’t even dream of. Do we really lag in the resources to innovate? I don’t think so. Even if we don’t wanna outsource this part, we can sure learn a few tricks and tips from the Silicon Valley. Why go abroad for this, I say. Bank of Baroda has the capability of developing what the mighty Americans are doing, in Bengaluru, the Silicon Valley of India. With Indian engineers a huge hit in the Silicon Valley, recruit them here in BOB so that we can create a state of the art technology base that he world envies. Sounds dreamy, right? Hard to achieve? Nada! Anything can happen in this world, my friend. Anything. You just got to have that spark to do it.

 

I can safely say that banks will themselves become obsolete in the future, if not near future. Who got to the time to go to an actual bank and get a loan sanctioned? Maybe it will take another Mark Zuckerburg or a Steve Jobs to pave the way for the dreamers to create something revolutionary that will give banking services at customers’ fingertips. No physical branches. Just a database, that stores your money. A virtual bank to say the least. And we all know that the one who averted change, was the one that got eliminated from the competition first.

 

Here, we are talking about the future of Bank of Baroda in another 100 years. So, get your mind cleared of all the apprehensions; the RBI policies, the government rules, the borders etc. They will not matter. The world today is not walking the marathon. It is ‘sprinting’ it.

 

Drones seemed like a stupid idea to many. 3D printers were like a flying pony. But look, where have we arrived! A world that literally is a living example to the popular phrase- Nothing is impossible.

 

So, yes. my friends,  nothing is impossible. This world has a place only for the thinkers, the dreamers and the achievers.

 

Wishing Bank of Baroda a happy 109th birthday. Rise like a sun and enlighten the whole world 🙂

 

A proud Barodian,

 

XOXO,

H