August 1, 2008

Ombudsmen Ahoy!!

I've discovered just recently this 'Bogeyman' of private banks.With so much power at his discretion,I guess it is always a nightmare to face his wrath.Even the best of the orators/negotiators/lawyers cannot win over him if you have broken the law and want to escape from it.With the kind of nauseating track record private banks maintain here ( including the foreign ones ) with respect to retail banking,it is fun to watch em being whipped again and again for crossing the law wrong.I pity the Foreign Institutions ( banks ) even more.Coming from seasoned capitalist background and mindset,they do not realize the fact that India is predominantly a socialist economy ( even though it is of a mixed type ).Poor them.I am not sure whether they have realized that the Ombudsman is pro people and not pro ( capitalist ) private banks.The Ombudsman,RTI and the Reserve Bank of India have become my weapons of terror against these 'money pinching whenever I want' banks.It was amazing to go through all the laws laid down by the apex bank and realize how blatantly banks violate them.Just the other day,I was declined a certain product from a Foreign bank and the reasons to explicate the same were not supplied citing an inherent inability because of 'bank policy'.Thought that was a funny excuse and checked out the RBI website for all the rules/regulations for that kind of product.And behold!Explicitly mentioned in the site was that every bank has to provide reasons for denying service to a particular customer clearly.I laughed my hind off after reading the complete annexure and shot off a mail to the bank taunting them to break the law again.Before this incident,I happened to be at the recieving end of gross misinformation by a certain bank.What was supposed to be a simple process of opening savings account turned out to be a nighmare after more than 11% of my initial balance was wiped out for reasons unknown.When demanded to know why cash was being pared off my account,untenable theories of a colossal magnitude were spun which were like a fresh pile of elephant dung.Being careful not to get indignant or be rash,I treaded the Ombudsman way,warning the bank of action.That was enough for the bank to jump up like an ass and reverse all the money filching.They probably thought the aam aadmi are foolish and can always be taken for a big grand ride.Well,yes you can take us all for a ride cause I'd love to wait and see the Ombudsman crashland you at the end.

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