Noel Ellis's Official Blog

I wield the pen to explore the vastness of the human mind

Category: 1000 rupees

CHANGE THE GOAL POST

Let us start with an assumption that we are going to use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes, nothing wrong, most of the countries are doing it. What if I say that the same nuclear technology will also be used for making bombs as a safety and security measure for my country? I sign all declarations and prove to the world that our intentions are very pious & holy but this needs to be done for the country, nothing wrong in it again. Well, time passes everything is fine and one fine day one bomb explodes and people die at a very large scale.  You then say that actually this bomb had an alternative use for a long lost dream of India called population control. You start justifying it by saying; see how many people we have reduced from this earth and from India in particular. How beneficial it is to the country, so many lesser mouths to feed, so much lesser burden on the economy and infrastructure so on and so forth. Everyone wonders if the minister justifying the explosion is in his senses or out of his wits.

What has happened here is that there has been a change of not only the goal post but change in the game itself. The venue changed, the rules and regulations were tweaked as per circumstances and in fact there was nothing original left as to why we started this whole nuclear exercise in the first place. We kept testing the waters and kept adjusting our aim and destinations as we went along as per our convenience. We used political jargon, some facts and figures, some percentages and some decimals to create an impression that what we are presenting to the public is correct and convincing. Poor public which is naive, illiterate and actually is not concerned because if the gareeb janata keeps getting his roti somehow, achhe din or no achhe din, he continues to believe in his political masters. They make, bend, change, tweak, modify and then justify the rules with sugar coated figures.

Well that was my aim to confuse myself so I started with the nuclear example and have still not revealed why am I writing all this. Well folks, I happened to hear our very dear Mr FM & DM briefing the media on the RBI report on the effects of re-monetisation I suppose. At the end of the day the whole exercise of demonetisation aka re-monetisation was done as the colour of the old notes was not matching the PM dresses. In the bargain if the tax payers base of the country increased by 17.971%, well what is wrong with it. The hundreds of tonnes of raddi collected in form of old 500 and 1000 rupee notes will be now handed over to the wall paper industry to change the colour of the walls of the North and South block. The black money which was supposed to come pouring in is still stuck in some foreign land and nothing in black could be retrieved. The cash less changed directions to less cash and the figure quoted was also in fractions of a percentage like 15.237%. Who knows how this figure has been calculated or arrived at and how accurate it is. At least I am not interested. The militants were supposed to be hit by demonetisation but they continued their demonization. Yes the only people who hit them were the armed forces and they shall continue to decimate them.

Added to this chaos of demonetisation came GST. What good it is to man or beast and what services it is taxing that no one is clear to be frank. Now we actually have a demonetised GST economy. The world economists are pondering over it as a special case study to find out how is it going to affect the coconut exports of Maldives as they are convinced that in India nothing has changed. Why I say this is because the trains keep derailing killing innocents travellers, children are again being massacred in hospitals. Babas and Baby’s keep ruling the roost. Bombay and Delhi cannot get over the deluge of rains. Pakistan continues its nefarious activities as usual. China is doing what it wants to do. I am where I was, except for my increasing weight I can find no change in me or my environment around.

It is not surprising at all because the FM handles the defence budget; he is also the DM. In the same breadth, he must be handling the home budget also so he should be the home minister too. I am not surprised that they have amalgamated the rail budget into the general budget but then where is the need to have a railways minister? If FM is going to handle all the money then why have so many ministers floating around. Here I find no logic as the people who are experts in their fields especially defence find themselves not even in the playing eleven of the game. They have been kept merely as extras. Which game they are going to play that the PM will decide? How long they will play that game before shifting to another sport that too is left to him? It is as simple as the cabinet reshuffle. From HRD to textile to another ministry in three years is like Mithali Raj shifting from cricket to badminton to boxing. Then we will expect her to win every game for India, while Sindhu and Mary Kom are told to play kabaddi and do sailing. What is the difference in sport a, b or c?

Well friends, this is not the first time the goal posts have been changed in this country. It was all started with good intentions like the surrendering of gas subsidy. Opening of the bank account was the next initiative. How far has it been really successful that Bhim, Paytm or such portals will tell? Kashmir boils with no goal post in site. Achhe din are just games people say but don’t play.  Will all these exercises bring some peace if not ache din with or without a changed goal post in the near future? I wonder!!!!!!!!!!!!

JAI HIND

 

IN CASH AND BODY BAGS A SOLDIER PAYS HIS TAXES

 

I was going through the summary of the GST bill sent to me on social media. I came to know that it has been tabled as a “money bill”. Well it is all about money going out of my pocket so I tried to find out what does it mean. Folks I gave up moment I saw the text of the money bill. I suggest don’t waste your time looking at it. The gist is that Rajya Sabha has just to go through certain paces for formality sake on such bills. People there may fret and fume and pick faults in the bill but the last laugh will be had by Sir Jaitley and his team in the Lok Sabha as they can show a “THENGA” to the upper house. What the states are going to do is obviously clear. Resistance might be there from only non BJP states, so dear common man will it be good, bad or ugly for you, time will tell.

Be that as it may. I would like to know, will there be only one tax on my Colgate and Thums up? Not that I use any. Will my carry home income increase with this bill? Will my income tax reduce? Will goods be cheaper? Will availability of items increase from the PM to my Bai who may prefer to use a “daatun” instead of paste. For PM Sahib it is herbal and natural besides Baba Ramdev recommends it and for my bai it’s free and readily available from the jungle. No VAT and this that needs to be paid.

FM Sahib, you pay me a pay/pension depending whether I am serving or retired and you tax it at source. I have no issues with that. Then you lay down how much will be tax free and how much won’t be. No issues with that too. Then you lay down income slabs on a sliding scale, I grant you that also. You also give me ways and means to save my money under 80-100cc category or whatever. Tell me one thing, if I have to earn to save why I earn in the first instant. If I have to earn and put it back in a scheme then why is my pay scale fixed? Why don’t you lay down that this much amount will be reduced, this will be put in compulsory saving till you retire, and this much I will take back for the government? Period! Why do you want me to fill forms and show you how much you gave me and how much I owe you and how much I have paid you back, and in case if I don’t pay by 31st March you further add a penalty to it. What nonsense this is! My pay scales are fixed by you, then why keep deducting. Do it once for all and save me this tension of filing returns. Half the times I am posted at places where you don’t provide me the net and most of the times how hard I try I can’t make out head or tail what to fill in where, though you claim filing is a cake walk. My foot! Please save me this agony also sir like you are doing for the GST. Tax me once and then let me relax for life time.

I have some more issues with you sir. OK fine you tax my pay, pension now you tax my pension plus pay as I am now working for a corporate. Firstly, you put me at a disadvantage when I come to the civil world as I am seen as a person with double income. They don’t realise I gave 25 years or more for this nation unflinchingly and earned my pension. Secondly, certain people don’t want to pay taxes as they say most of it goes in the pay and pensions of people like me and the balance goes to feed all “sarkari damads” like the parliamentarians. Out of every rupee only some part reaches the beneficiary rest is siphoned off due to your enacted laws and poor administrative controls. I can forgive them as they know not what they say about me but you all need to find answers for your part.

If I have paid you the tax which was due on my pay and say I save some of it which I put it in FD, you charge me tax on its interest also. What the hell? Then you add that interest to my rest of the income and tax it again. If the scale tips over to the next tax bracket there is a quantum jump on the tax which I have to dish out. I decide to buy a house from my savings. I pay you tax again including all swach bharat, beti parhao, kissan cess etc. The bank’s loan me the amount and charge me interest where as my pay comes in that bank only.  You give me a tax rebate equivalent to peanuts on housing loan, where do I go? When builders fund you and your parties then no one opens his mouth but the builder opens his mouth wide when he charges me with all taxes and cess’ and half the thing he wants under the table. I buy a vehicle and for that I pay registration fee, insurance, road tax, environment tax and you name it. I paid so much of income tax to built roads then you charge me road tax besides you don’t let me off without paying toll tax too. Is it right? I go to a dhaba I pay no taxes on what I eat. I go to a restaurant and the last five lines are taxes and charges for what I ate. Depending on the type of eatery, they charge many times the amount for the ambiance and a waiter and you want me to pay the government of India for giving my daughter a treat. Isn’t it ironical FM sahib? I don’t mind paying for a rail ticket as the railways have definitely improved; unfortunately there has been an accident today.

If you really see the soldiers, they actually are paying taxes to the nation by putting their lives at stake for you people who don’t understand their worth and treat them as cannon fodder. One political decision to sort out Kashmir has been delayed by you for donkey’s years. How many more body bags would be sufficient? How many lost legs and limbs do you want? How many widows and orphans do you want for this nation to run in terms of taxes my dear sirs? Don’t we protect you in the close cordons when you as MPs move around in bullet proof cars? A man hangs on to a modified footrest to protect you and still you want us to pay taxes. If you are the chosen one of the people why do you need any protection from your own people?

You have one rank called MP, with one pay and one pension. You thrive on our money and want us to pay you both in cash and body count, how sad! You keep getting paid as you never feel like retiring. We soldiers take oath to dedicate ourselves to the nation even at the peril of our lives and you people want us to perpetually remain in peril and continue to be martyred without you people being harmed. We obey the rules laid down by you and you snatch away what we earn. We are still magnanimous to give you back enough in taxes and personal sacrifices, which you mismanage for obvious reasons. Some of us luckily survived, we have grown old and weak and silently sit at Jantar Mantar peacefully to make you realise that it is high time you gave us our due sirs. Are you listening yea members of parliament? I wonder!!!!!!!!!!!!

WHY CAN’T THE PM EXPERIMENT

I have not understood as to why the critics of demonetisation are so adamant for a roll back of the scheme. Today, the easiest thing I can do is criticise. It costs nothing. If that doesn’t work then hit below the belt. If this also fails then do personal attacks. If that also doesn’t work then threaten to go on strike, in fact incite people to some kind of riot. If that doesn’t work too then go to the President, like students go running to the school Principal when some student has beaten you. Well, the President listens and does what his cabinet advises him and not what Pam, Chic and Mary want. I changed this because I saw the leading ladies lodging their protest with the President. Well, my wife has stood in line in the bank. She deposited the 1000 & 500 notes and exchanged a few as per guidelines. She also withdrew by cheque the amount which was allowed on that day. Yes, we were lucky not to get 10 kg coins, but sure enough we got 20 and 50 rupees bundles. Yesterday, finally I got the coveted 2000 notes from the ATM. I and my family, (bai included) are very happy.

I accept that it is the sowing season; the farmer needs money for seeds and fertilizer. I have no idea how the whole farming process goes, but can’t the government ensure that old notes be allowed to be accepted by seed and fertilizer shops, after all most of them are government owned. If hospitals, private or otherwise have been told, why can’t the agricultural sector be another aberration too? They are also our life line. My gut feeling is that I smell a rat in this farmer’s issue. How can it be tided over, can only be explained by the agricultural experts? The small and marginal farmer may have been hit; hope the government does something soon. Time is critical for the winter crop and I am sure the PM is very sensitive to farmer’s issues as well.

Today, I need to discuss why don’t we allow our PM to experiment? We keep cursing Nehru, Indira Gandhi, VP Singh, Moraji Desai, Devegowda and others for whatever experiments they did during their times. What is wrong if a person believes that his endeavour shall get good results for the nation? Maybe in the short run, times can be difficult, but in the long run we shall reap dividends. If this experiment fails, the PM has dug his grave. Not only he, but his party shall be wiped out in 2019. Just think, will a person be so fool hardy to put his country into a chaos. It will cost not only his reputation, but may be disastrous for the whole outfit he belongs to. Secondly, however secretive he might have been about the implementation part of this scheme, wouldn’t he and his team of experts have thought through about all the repercussion of the move to the farthest level. Will a person be so foolish, to bring about such a change just to see the colour of money change to pink? I am sure in such a vast country chances have to be taken and mid course corrections to schemes are the norm. So dear “AALOCHAKS”, just hold your horses for a while, don’t jump the gun.

Do you think a lala of Delhi has ever maintained his BAHI KHATA in white? Has he ever given you a bill for the 200 gm kaju or kishmish you have bought? What about the money he gives on loan with a das taka biaaj. Where is that in the system? I am sure he would have calculated that on a rough piece of paper, on which he scribbles some annotations which even the doctor fraternity would take years to decipher. I would rather say if you take that parchi to a chemist, he might give you medicines for your cholesterol and BP. (pun intended). Today, if he is making tons of money, can’t he wait for a little while to start making all over again? Well, to cry that we were doing business in cash till date, my dear friends, why don’t you start doing business by cards from tomorrow? Let everyone & the government understand the money you all exchange. Half the black funds of Delhi will be exposed when cash business turns to plastic. The other half is in the real estate there. Now consider the sabzi mandi people. Yes the hand cart puller, the rickshaw wala etc need to be paid in cash at least as of now. For them provisions have to be made. Why the vegetable auctions can’t be done with online payment. Why can’t diesel for trucks be paid though cards? I admit that the poor living in slums, the rag pickers, who have to work for everyday living, and mind you it is a sizeable number in Delhi who definitely needs money to buy his daily bread. But, what about the drug addicts, who are a big number amongst the slum dwellers, they will be automatically checked. I see this as a positive.

I am convinced that my convenience takes priority over the nation. My welfare comes first always and every time. My routine, if broken, hell will break lose. My black money, if touched will be resented, revolted, and resisted to be parted away with. My comfort, if interfered with, shall not be tolerated by any means. I cannot be put to the slightest discomfort come what may, for that the government better bend and break all rules or make new rules to suit  me & myself. If it is not affecting me, I keep quiet. If the problem is in the neighbourhood, how do I care? Till the time, I have my square meals, I couldn’t care less for anyone, is a common Indian attitude. We talk of Swach Bharat, another experiment by our PM, but I shall continue to spit pan and gutka all over the country side, I will throw packs of kurkure and bottles of mineral water out of my car. Shauchalaya experiment was also of this PM, but I have to pee on the nearest tree, cleanest wall, closest drain, thinking that no one is seeing me. I have relieved myself, who cares if that place stinks or if people passing by are embarrassed.

If I can get my cash, and if I can hoard some, who cares about the others. Banks are meant to keep and distribute cash, government is supposed to print notes. If my crop fails or my business suffers, it is the bank which is responsible or it is the government. Have you all seen the way people strictly follow unwritten norms when water distribution is done by tankers. You dare spill a few drops, and dare you break the queue, all hell will break lose. The eagerness to pay the electricity bill on the last date at all costs by standing in the longest queue shows how we understand the importance of electricity, then it is no inconvenience. I am sure things will ease out soon. However, some politicians are incorrigible. They have to do vote bank politics, what a shame it is! You can’t be disrespectful to your PM damn it.

Friends, I have a request to make to all those who stand against demonetisation. Please give this some time to get streamlined, and please suggest improvements. Kindly, encourage online payments. Insist on them. Kids today are so well versed with mobiles etc, that they will teach their parents in a day how things are done. I request the politicians to stop making a fool of themselves by saying that they will give KURBANI, if this scheme is not rolled back within three days. Let me assure you, no one may turn up for your funeral, as most of us would be in bank queues. Today, the funding to terrorists has taken a quantum hit; results are clear in the valley. Let us clean our systems from the corrupt and corruption. Each small step has to be taken, howsoever difficult it might be. To reach a goal, the pain of the journey has to be endured. You can’t just abandon the journey in anticipation of the hardships. Will the people who I am trying to address get the message, I am sure they will, but will they pay heed to what I say, I wonder!!!!!!!!!!

SITUATION REPORT FROM MY BANK BATTLEGROUND

I have been speaking to the villagers around; the apprehension that money in the banks will not evaporate just does not seem to go down their gullet. They believe, that tomorrow never comes, so encash what you have today. They also firmly believe that moment you find one note of 500 rush to the bank to get it exchanged, if not then deposit it in your or anyone known to you’s account. Truth is, now people have almost lost count to who all they had given notes to deposit. Well, they are simple folks, most of them are uneducated, and trying to educate them in one day about what Modi ji and his gang are thinking is beyond the capabilities and purview of the bank staff. I was amazed that villagers now with ink marks on their fingers are lining up the next day again, and refuse to listen to the bank staff. Their argument is simple, that so what I have come again, my limit of withdrawing 10000 in a week is far-far away, so how can the bank refuse me, Above that I have stood in the queue since morning, there is no way that I am leaving the counter. If you don’t let me do my transaction, no one else will at this counter. So the poor bank manger folds her hands and says OK mausi, you are the boss. The folks in line are her village mates, and support her too, as they too are revisiting the bank.

Well friends, the reason there is so much time at their hands is because the rice fields are still green and the harvest has not started. Most of the village folk depend on agriculture and are free. All those who are doing petty jobs are being paid by villagers to stand in line and deposit cash on their behalf at a nominal fee, of a meal or a kg of rice. I am speaking of a remote place like where I stay. It is surprising to know that in and around this place there is only one SBI branch and more than 20 odd villages directly dependent on it. To my surprise, that before the jan dhan yojana came into being, most of the people here had their accounts already open, maybe, during the good old days when this bank was just commissioned some 20 years back. The bank must have wanted to increase its business, by attracting small amounts as deposits. As time would have gone by those folks never returned as they hardly had any money to keep their accounts activated.  Or the usual lack of education and lethargy to come to the bank at the cost of inconvenience. I am sure they would have faced a lot of hassles which deterred them to visit the bank again which now has turned out to be a night mare for the branch manager here. Village folk do not understand that the account has been dormant for years and has got blocked and will take some time to get reactivated. These simple folks just won’t budge, and their argument is we have an account; you deposit the money, what procedure you got to follow is your look out. I cannot come daily, and dare you refuse services to me. I can become boisterous, I can become vociferous, I can become abusive and I can even threaten you with dire consequences. Poor manger has got no choice, but to condescend to their needs and demands. The queue keeps lengthening in the mean while. Restlessness keeps growing outside. No wonder, one has to cater for water and snacks for the bank battleground.

Issue doesn’t end here; people are queuing up for new accounts. Now the dilemma for the bank staff is that they are grossly short of staff and facilities. The ATMs are invariably out of cash. The bank staff cannot leave their chairs to refill as the rush is beyond expectation. The vans which come here leave the cash in bank, unlike other places where some staff is allocated to directly refill ATMs. It is a double whammy for the bank staff and the few educated people like me (pun intended). In fact frankly I have not been to the bank since last Sunday because, the line never ends. I don’t have time during office hours to go and waste a full day and find by the time I reach the window the cash has finished. Even though they gave a special window for the company employees, but it is grossly inadequate. The villagers barge in and it does cause a hassle to everyone. Well, they ask, why this preferential treatment to another account holder like them. And he is right. The battle to encash continues, how long? Time only will tell.

I hope the hoarding stops, and people realise that living in limited means is also possible, or go to places where you can swipe your card, but the rural economy is all on cash. The machhi wali brings in the fish, deals in cash. The boatmen fills in diesel in cash, the ice wala sells ice to boatmen in cash, all fish auctions are in cash, the fish transporter charges in cash. In fact most of it is on credit, however final transactions are in cash. The sabji wala, the kiryana wala, everyone is on cash. I sometimes wonder if a Kg of basmati costs 100 bucks then a bag of 80 kgs is 8000 bucks, and if you just glance around even a small 20’x20’ kiryana shop, the cost of items are way above 5 lakhs I suppose, with the variety of items that they store. I am sure the logistics and economics can be worked out. The mithai wala, besides supplying in bulk, has to cater for his mithai shop also. The cost of milk being around 50 a kg, you can imagine how many cows would have to be milched for the items he displays and the gunny bags of “beson” that he must be consuming to make namkeens, as also the bag loads of maida. Friends all this is in cash here. Take the coconut vendor for example. A skilled guy charges Rs 70/- to 100/- per tree for climbing up and plucking them. Every tree bears from 70 to 100 nuts and say if he does 30 trees a day it is some figure. If you say a grove has a 100 trees and each coconut is sold for 10-15/- in bulk, it is more than two truck loads, and imagine in our area there would be thousands of such groves. Some cash is flowing here folks.

Well let me not add more woes to my and your imagination. Let me not also burden you with my dehati type calculations. Folks just pray that things normalise soon. Pray ATMs are up and about soon. Pray there are no deaths in hospitals or otherwise due to insensitivity, neglect or lack of cash. I must thank and offer a grand salute to my banker friends. Well, you guys and gals have to rough it up for quite some time I am sure, and hope you all continue doing a good job that too on war footing. But will our folks understand that hoarding is not good for the system, I am sure they will, but when will I consider to have won the bank battle and have my wallet full again, I wonder!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

MY WALLET IS FULL

 

I have a very bad habit of forgetting my wallet every now and then. In fact, I have another bad habit of never checking as to how much money is in it. Well I am disclosing this secret to you all. Who can take advantage of this are three people, one my wife, second my daughter and third is our Bai. Right, Wrong. I will tell you why in the reverse order as I mention these ladies.

The place where I stay is in wilderness. Our bai’s are ladies, who though are poor but have an unflinching integrity. Till date even a coin which has slipped out of our hands and rolled under the bed has never gone missing. Rather my wife keeps a small bowl in the kitchen in which go in all the coins at the end of the day, to pay for petty expenditures. Well, we have free home delivery of many things, fresher than Big Basket and healthier than any organic product store. Bai’s bring in the freshest vegetables, fruits, fish and prawns early morning. Before starting their daily chores they sell it around and have their wallets full, which they hide very dearly and very close to their hearts. So why should they lose their credibility by flicking a coin or a note or two. I remember we had a bai, who gave my wife very clear cut instructions to lock all our cupboards with or without valuables, or else she won’t do jharu-poncha. Well, what can be said beyond that?

The second lady I mention is my daughter, well; we have taught her to be an honest child and are grooming her to be an honest citizen. By the way the only thing she requires some money is for an odd vada-pav, once in a while. There are no McD’s and KFCs in around 80 kms of this place. She is very fond of pens and pencils, which I never lay any restrictions on and the third thing she loathes on is paint brushes and paints of all types, which I never, limit either. She has a flair for arts and painting, she gets what is available in our small village and nearby town. She too has a bad habit. She gives papa whatever she collects from her aunts and uncles or whatever cash she receives on her birthdays. So our trust, faith and our relationship is such that it needs no further elaboration. Papa never hides his purse. Everyone in the family knows where he keeps it. Papa only tells her to get the purse when she needs any money; she takes what she needs and returns what is left. I can proudly say there is no better virtue than honesty that one can teach the child. The norm is, in case of an emergency, take what you need and tell me what you took. Period!

Now comes the third lady, well she is the CFO of my house, in fact the finance minister. My job is to get the cash, and now she does it on her own with her debit card. I don’t even bother to think what is left in the house. I just work hard and wait for the most beautiful sms which comes from your bank to tell you that your salary has been credited. If I get cash, I hand it over to her and she then manages the house till she needs more. She manages the complete finances of the household and keeps a track meticulously. Not a single note can go haywire. The bai, the sweeper, the gas, the milkman, the paperwala, the church funds et al. I frankly don’t even ask how much she pays them, and don’t have to bother, as she knows how to run the house. I even hand over the SODEXO coupons to her. How, what, when to use which currency? She is the boss. My duty is to drive her to the market and carry loads in terms of bags. She only checks my wallet from time to time and refills it with adequate cash. I have yet to find anyone better than my wife to manage the cash and house hold.

My wallet has various compartments; one has a debit card slid in, and along side is the colour Xerox of my driving license. On the other side I used to put my visiting cards. Now a day I don’t carry them, nor accept visiting cards, save paper my dears. Today, give a missed call and you are connected to the world, isn’t it? Then there used to be a secret compartment, where I used to hide a 1000 Rs note as an emergency fund, now courtesy modi ji, I had to disclose my black fund, what a pity! On one side I now keep a few hundred rupee notes and on the other side small quantity of notes of other denominations. I don’t like coins, as they make the wallet heavy and add to the discomfort while you sit down anywhere.

Well ladies and gentlemen; I also queued up in the bank the other day to refill my wallet with the good old notes as the wallet was running dry. We had used up all our reserves, including our daughters piggy bank stuff. I entered the bank in a serpentine queue and awaited my turn. The advantage of having a bank in your colony is that manager knows your wife and dog better than you. She is a pretty looking lady and the moment she saw me and my wife she nodded her head. In acknowledgement I winked at her and she winked back. After a little while she appeared on the horizon again, and I sheepishly tried to catch her attention to request her to relieve us of this agony of the wait by doing a short cut somehow, but she gestured back with a shake of her head which went along the imaginary line of the queue of 50 who were standing in front of me. I got the message that patience dear, patience for our PMs Great initiative.

After about 40 minutes I reached a window which was closed and the manager came and sat on it herself. I smiled at her and kind of thanked her for the hard work and tough times she was having. We could only talk in gestures as the decibel levels inside were so high that one had turned half deaf, and the only recognizable things were the dirty smell of sweat and rotten smell of farts. This time she winked at me, as she opened the window I was standing on. She took my cheque of 10000 and paid me in bundles of 50, she also took 4×1000 notes and gave me four bundles of 20 Rs notes. I felt like winning the Kaun banega crorepati contest. My wife’s wallet appears to be full now for the time being.

I was just thinking was it due to my winking that the manager developed a soft corner for me and opened the counter and did she continue with that window after we left, I wonder!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

BYE-BYE 1000 WELCOME 2000

Can you believe it folks till date I do not know how much money is there in my wallet? It was only after the PMs Announcements that I dug into my purse to see how rich or poor I am. It came to me as a shock there were 5 notes, two of 1000 one of 50 and two of 10. My wife could muster around 3-400. There was a kind of tension I could see, but not panic. So far it was so good.

Last week we decided to bring in new plants to our collection and we made a trip to one of the nurseries about 60 kms away. The journey began from the first ATM in our colony which refused to give us any money except a printed slip. The saga continued to the next 3 ATMs. My wife was in panic mode, that we won’t be able to buy anything and our trip might go waste. I tried to pacify her that the nursery may accept debit cards. Well, as this conversation continued, midway we saw an ATM, and it was a welcome site to see people queued up. I & Anika, my daughter continued enjoying the music and wife was sent to do the needful. Suddenly there was a fanatic tap on the car and a burly looking chap pointed towards the ATM, I jumped out thinking someone has flicked her purse, but I calmed down, as we were in area of Alibaug known for “shareef” people. Wife said she had done two transactions and it is not giving the money. “Lut gaye boss” was my reaction. Hope the bank has not debited my account.

I had not even seen the bank whose ATM it was, worst it had the engulfing kind of ATM card reader. Anyways, I said let me give it a try with my card but it was in vain. The guard there was quietly sitting and rubbing his khaini, laughed and said sir try the next ATM about 20 meters ahead. To my surprise it was an unknown bank to me called Kasur Vyasa bank, chalo, I said let me try my luck. Wife waited outside and I did my transaction and out rolled 10×1000 notes, wow I said, it was the first time in ages I saw 1000 Rs notes, so I signaled to my wife to seek permission to take out 10 more and she gave a thumbs up. Ab hamari ginti raeeson mein hai, I thought to myself. Luckily, the nursery charged through card, so we came home rich, not realizing we would be poor overnight. Out of that lot my wife had not spent 9 and I had 2, tension hi tension. No guzara on pension.

Wife got after me kal subha bank jao, ye jama karao, but modi ji had closed the banks and ATMs. I said relax yaar, what if we did not spend anything for the next two days, but ladies you know na, they get after you. Next day I get a message from wife, take a copy of the bank form and copies of the adhaar card so that they can be deposited and cash can be withdrawn. Well, on my way to lunch I saw a super long queue at the bank, so I decided there was no point troubling myself. I reached home and there was a wail coming from the kitchen, I rushed, to see what the matter is. Our bai sat holding her head, she is a bihari, and doesn’t have an account, because she doesn’t have a ration card or an adhaar card and her whole years savings which she keeps with my wife she was saving it for her annual visit to her home next month. Total 15000 and all in 500 note denominations. Well like a Good Samaritan I told her not to worry, she will have all her money. Poor lady hides it from her husband, who otherwise would drink away to glory. She is a very happy and smiley lady, and I saw both her smile and happiness returning giving me so much satisfaction, that so what modi ji wiped out her money in one night, but she has Modi ka baap, that your’s truly, (pun intended).

Well last two days we have purchased nothing. Our kiryana store wala says he will accept the notes, our post office accepted the notes and in fact my smart wife sent a money order of 5000 to her sister, my bank is not refusing but the only limitation is that the van with new notes has not arrived and they are dispensing only Rs100 notes. The bank is short of staff, so the dispensing is slow. I shall wait for the new notes so what if I feel inconvenienced. Maybe I live in a different world, maybe, the positive move has made me strong to live with it and support it, I sleep well, and my wife feels positive too. In fact the other day the milkman came, and said bhabhi ji 100 Rs do na, wife said 500 le ja. The chap pulled out two 500 notes from each pocket and said ye aap rakh lo. What a joke! People with smaller denominations are richer and the people with bigger denominations are panicking. There have been stories of sack full of notes lying in garbage dumps; I am waiting to get my hands on just one sack. Acche din, isn’t it?

I was touched by my daughter’s gesture that she brought her piggy bank and can you believe it we had more than 500 rupees in coins with us, so before Modi ji bans all that too, we must use it off. I was surprised actually to see lots of coins dipped in a mug with surf water. Wife told me that the coins have gone black and people might not accept it saying that it’s a Khota sikka. I was taken back in the old days when this term was used for a person who used to betray you, but yes, we turned our not so khota sikkas into useable sikkas by brushing away the dirt off them. By the way old toothbrushes are the best to be used for all such activities, isn’t it?

Well folks I do not know the repercussions of this move and can only make educated guesses but the mood is positive, the feeling is good, the inconvenience is pardonable, the long queues are worth the wait for, the excitement to see and feel the new notes is ever increasing, and a voice in my heart says buddy keep one 500 and 1000 note for posterity, but then dil nahi manta, as it is a lot of money. I have requested my wife to do the bank transactions, once the rush in the bank is over, till then we shall bank on the piggy bank money and keep digging out small notes and coins which may have got lost in the box bed, sofas, cupboards, attaché cases etc, just to have a feel of living the good old days again. I promise that my bai need not panic, as we shall not let her down. Well done Modi saab, many more such bold and shocking moves to come. Hindustaan’s janta only understands this language, the opposition can keep criticizing, but you bash on regardless. Give one deadly shock to Pakistan too and on your return from Japan. I am with my PM. Are you too???????????????????

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