In order to withdraw some urgent money, I made one withdrawal from ATM on 18-10-2009. The first transaction failed and so I made a second try. This time, I got Rs.1000/- as demanded. The security person commented, “Your account shall be credited next day for this failed transaction.”
But as a safety measure, I lodged an internet complaint for this failed transaction, took a “Print Screen” shots for complaint as well as receipt. Both this “Print Screen” shots helped me in all this failed transaction.
On 1-12-09 while my pass book was updated I found there is no credit for Rs. 1000/- for failed transaction and since I was in bank, I made enquiries and I was told to lodge a second complaint. Accordingly second complaint was lodged on that day.
On 1-1-2010 while updating my pass book I noticed, there is still no credit. On enquiries, I was told it takes about a month or some time more. But still visit 3rd floor and check in ATM section. The matter was left there only.
This is the first part of the story, second part started on 6-1-2010 evening when I was visiting RBI web page to find Singapore $ rate. I found a link for common persons, where in there were many notifications and my eye caught a notification dated 17-7-2009 for ATM reconciliation. I downloaded the pdf. The link to this page is:
Reserve Bank of India
On reading this pdf I was rather shocked! It had stated, if the complaint is not solved within 12 working days, I was to be given Rs. 100/- per day as compensation.
On next day, i.e. on 7-1-10, I took the print out of this notification and visited my bank at around 2 PM and showed it to the branch manager. The effect was very surprising and he promised to look in the matter and my residence received a call from bank staff that my account has been credited with Rs. 1000/- at around 5 PM. The message was also kept to call bank next day. I had high-lighted the condition of Rs. 100/- per day with high light marker. The Manager, Chief Manager and staff member started pleading some of the member from the branch shall be punished and he (Chief Manager) shall look in the matter and find the way. There was no action on his part for other 10 or more days.
Since this being a very major issue, in the mean time I contacted an advocate and asked if a public interest litigation can be filed in High Court and get the order for all banks to act on this rule and give the compensation. He confirmed that this can be done but there has to be some evidence from different banks as they are also not following this rule. Hence he dictated an application under RTI and asked me to visit 2 days later to collect print out. That day he refused to take the case on the ground of time and refused to give the draft also.
I thought of trying it my self and made application to:
1) Bank of Maharashtra, as the H.O. was in Pune where I stay.
2) Bank of Baroda, their Regional Office.
3) Dena Bank, in there Regional Office.
4) ICICI as they have ‘n number of ATM centers.
5) IDBI bank Mumbai.
6) Bank of India, Mumbai as my bank.
These banks were selected as test case and have no specific reason.
A separate application to RBI was also made since it was referred in there letter that they are receiving many complaints.
Questions asked to 6 banks were:
1) How many complaints were received for wrongfully debited on account of “failed ATM transactions”?
2) In how many days the wrongfully debited amount was credited to the account of customer? You may give the answer as min and max days taken.
3) Do you have any stipulated period policy to solve this type of complaint?
4) If so, what is the maximum period you have specified?
5) Do you reimburse any amount as compensation, for the delay caused in above period to the aggrieved customer?
6) If yes, what is the amount you reimburse to the aggrieved customer? And how it is calculated?
7) Do you have any system, to review this failed ATM transactions, and keep them to the Board of Directors, indicating inter alia, the quantum of compensation given to customer, reasons thereof, and action taken to avoid this delay?
8) If yes, supply me the copy of this report.
In the letter to RBI the questions were asked giving the reference to the directives they have sent to banks, given on web page and are as:
1) How many complaints you received in connection of ATM failure in 2008? Give the details bank wise.
2) How many complaints you received for above reason in 2009?
3) How many complaints you have received after 17-7-2009?
4) What mechanism you have set to enforce the Payment and Settlement System Act 2007, (Act 51 of 2007)? (Section-18)
5) Is there any facility given on web site which gives the acknowledgement to the complaint via net?
6) If not why?
I think answers from RBI are very funny and vague. The answer given by the Reserve Bank is as follows:
1) Information is not available with this department readily, since ATM related complaints are categorized along with credit / debit card complaints in our Complaint Tracking System. As per our records, we have received 17648 complaints relating to ATM cards, Debit cards and Credit cards during the year 2008-09.
2) – do -
3) – do –
5) The web site has no such provision
6) The information is not available with this dept.
4) Answer to my (4) was from different dept. and the answer is “For regulation of payment system, the bank lays down policies and issues directions under Section 18 of Payment and settlement systems act 2007 as and when necessary.” It also states I can appeal against this reply to so and so….
From the banks, the response is as below:
1) ICICI : We are not covered under TRI and referred CIC order dated 9-8-2007
2) IDBI : No of complaint-73700 and follows rules of RBI. Min-2 days max. 12 days, follows RBI guideline and pay 100/- p.d. Answer to Q-8 can not be given under sec. 8(1)(d) of RTI act.
3) Bank of Maharashtra : No. of complaint=40010 and follows RBI directions and “there was no such occasion of delay by card cell” Answer to Q-8 – Not applicable.
4) Bank of Baroda replied “as all information called for is maintained by corporate office and we are forwarding your application to them”
5) Dena Bank : One Branch Manager from nearer branch visited my house but house was locked and hence he kept a message requesting to call on his mobile. So far there is no reply from them so far.
6) Bank of India : There is no reply so far.
I had sent one more RTI letter asking bank why my account was not credited with Rs.6500/- on 7-1-2010 along with Rs.1000/- and the account was credited 0n 25-2-2010 for Rs.6500/- The second letter was to separate Public Interest Litigation keep me away from one of beneficiary in the case.
Now, I want your guidance in this case for archiving the goal on all India basis.
I wish each and every one who is deprived from this compensation part should get the money. And to get it for them how do I precede with current status. Now on each and every move is important because millions and millions are involed in this case.
By MANOJ B. PATEL
In a case of H.N. Shah v I.T. Department CIC/MA/A/2008/156, Neeru Bajaj v I.T. Commissioner CIC/AT/2006/644, I.K. Sachdeva v D.G.of I.T. CIC/AT/A/2008/170 it is held that income tax returns was personal information, so disclosure of it was prohibited.
is there any remedy to get the information on this issue ?