In The Wonderland of ‘Aam Adami’

Harendra works with us. Harendra gets Rs 2,500 per month as salary. His employer bears all his expenditure food, clothes, and even haircuts. The total cost for Harendra to his employer must around Rs 5,000 or more. I don’t know if as per the government definition of BPL (Below Poverty Line), Harendra comes under BPL category.

But the most amazing was the cost of a service that the central government provides. He sent his money to his father in a village in Bihar. The village is having a post office too with a PIN Code. Harendra paid Rs 125 for sending Rs 2,500 at rate of five percent. And Harendra doesn’t know how much time the postal department will take to hand over the money to his father. He is worried as he to return some of money to his moneylender in time otherwise he will have to pay for an additional month. The post master has promised the disbursal to take 10 days or so.

Naturally there are two pertinent questions on this system of money transfer that the government must answer. It requires attention, as it is the poor and mostly people under BPL category, the ‘aam aadami’ who use this system of money transfer.

Why should the government or its postal department charge so high for the money transfer? It must not be anything more than 1 percent, if not 0.5 percent.

Why should a money transfer between New Delhi and a village in Bihar in this digital era of mobile phones be taking anything more than 1-2 days for the money transfer? Its shame that the post department can’t get the money transfer made fast and cheap.

It is unfortunate that the government including the Prime Minister has some excuse for every issue one raises. Look at the publicly heard reply of the Prime Minister for the LN Mittal’s remarks that India is not ready for megaprojects: “I recognize the frustration well wishers feel when they lament why things don’t work faster or why well formulated plans and policies don’t get implemented as well as they should be. It is probably true that we are a slow moving elephant but it is equally true that with each step forward we leave behind a deep imprint.”

Many times I think of shunning writing about the system mesh, but then I recover from the gloom and decide to go on doing it. And I am sure there are many such people.

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