oppn parties Bank Staff: The Real Heroes of Implementing Demonetization

News Snippets

  • Mobile operators Vodafone-Idea and Airtel decide to raise tariffs from next month
  • Sharad Pawar meets Sonia Gandhi and says more time needed for government formation in Maharashtra
  • Justice S A Bobde sworn in as the 47th Chief Justice of India
  • Supreme Court holds hotels liable for theft of vehicle from their parking area if parked by valet, says "owner's risk" clause is not a shield from such liability
  • Finance Minister says she is receiving feedback from many sectors that recovery is happening as there is lower stress
  • Sabarimala temple opens, but police bar the entry of women below 50 years
  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman says Air India and BPCL to be sold off by March
  • Media person Rajat Sharma resigns as DDCA president
  • Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress postpone meeting the governor of Maharashtra
  • Shiv Sena not to attend the NDA meeting on 17th November, says break up "a formality"
  • Shiv Sena says that the confidence the BJP is showing about forming the government in Maharashtra is based purely on its expectation of getting numbers through horse trading
  • Anil Ambani resigns as director of the bankrupt Reliance Communications
  • India beat Bangladesh by an innings and 150 rums inside three days in the first Test. Indian pacers excel after Mayank Agarwal's double century
  • Sena-NCP-Congress work out a common minimum programme, will form the government soon and it will last 5 years, says Sharad Pawar
  • Income Tax Appellate Tribunal upholds the decision to withdraw the charitable status of Young India, making it liable to pay Rs 145 in income tax. Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Vadra are the majority shareholders in the company
Two Muslim litigants in Ayodhya refuse to accept the Supreme Court order, say review petition might be filed
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Bank Staff: The Real Heroes of Implementing Demonetization

By Sunil Garodia

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
In our worries about paucity of cash to buy daily necessities and queuing up to procure the same, let us not forget the yeoman’s service being rendered to the nation and its people by the army of bank staff. Bankers nationwide have been under immense stress since the gates were opened to the public on November 10, post demonetization. Apart from the extraordinary surge in transactions and contact with an angry and confused sea of people, the working hours have been extended – sometimes the backend operations after closure of public business has extended late into the night, what with disposing off old currency and tallying all transactions.

The biggest scare is for those who are handling the inflow of old currency notes. It is not a secret that currency notes are one of the most contaminated and germ-infested things we handle on a daily basis. The very fact that they pass through so many hands, are stored in so many places and are recklessly handled by almost everyone makes them extremely dangerous for health. In the present case, the danger has been multiplied due to the fact that a part of what is being deposited in bank accounts now was hidden for years in assorted places, packed in various ways. A Facebook post by a banker testifying to the fact that they had to use masks to avoid the disgusting stench that these currency notes were emitting has already gone viral. It is either because banking staff who are handling cash are taking extra precautions to remain uninfected or it is a miracle that we have not heard of an outbreak of skin and other diseases among them till now.

Then there is the case of stress. The work related stress is often bearable. What is not is the interaction with an unending stream of new faces, all tired (from waiting in queues), thirsty and hungry, angry, confused and concerned about their money. Most such people have a short fuse and the bank staff has been handling the situation most diplomatically and with great efficiency to prevent flare-ups. Coupled with this is the change in rules every single day. Explaining to the people why they could withdraw Rs 4500 till yesterday and only Rs 2000 today is an extremely difficult task, but the bank staff has been handling the situation admirably.

So, salute this army. Next time you visit the bank, spare a thought for all this and treat your bank teller with added respect. He or she is bearing this extreme stress only to provide you a service that is not part of their usual duty. If they can be so efficient and cheerful under the circumstances, the least you can do to repay them is to show some gratitude. Do not be rough with them and always greet them with a smile. You will be surprised how that will put them at ease. Perhaps if they find even 10 grateful customers each day, they will sleep well and will be able to bear the stress better. Remember, they have to cope with this daily till December 30.