Saturday, August 16, 2014

Harassment to Senior Citizens by reducing rate of interest by State Bank Of India.

M.V.Ruparelia, Chief Patron, All India Senior Citizens Confederation (AISCCON),
A503 Rashmi Utsav,  Near Jangid Estate & Vijay Park, Mira Road (East),  Dist. Thane.401 107.
 M. 09821732855.     E/Mail:

To                                                                                          Date: 13-8-14.

Shri T K Mohapatra, Dy Secretary & Dy Registrar, Central Information Commission, August Kranti Bhawan, 2nd floor, , B Wing, Bhikaji Cama Place, New Delhi-110066.
Sub: CIC/VS/A/2013/001344/MP dt 23-7-14 received on 4-8-14. Ref: Dy. no. 158295/2013.
We are thankful to you for fixing the date of Hearing on 21-8-14 at 11-15 hrs. I am 81 and will not be able to come to Delhi. I shall be obliged, if I am given the opportunity to be heard on telephone on Mobile no. 09821732855 or landline 022- 28123691. Other ICs & CIC are permitting this and mention in Notice Of Hearing. If this is not possible, kindly decide the case on the basis of detailed position brought out in my IInd Appeal dt. 6-8-13 in terms of Gazette Notification for Central Information Commission (Appeal Procedure) Rules, 2005, revised on 31-7-12 and Guidelines issued by DOPT under their Memorandum no. 1/4/2009-IR dt 5-10-09.Simple information requested in Application dt 21-5-13 is not given, as will be seen from the following:-
Item i): As per the Business Standard report dated 1 February 2013, State Bank of India has reduced 0.25 points from additional interest of half a per cent paid to senior citizens on fixed deposits to reduce the cost of funds of banks. Details of this decision, sending a copy of any directives issued by Reserve Bank and/or Finance Ministry with copies of complete notings leading to cut of 0.25 points to Senior Citizens with orders of Directors and complete notings leading to cut of 0.25% are not given inspite of requesting to CPIO & AA.
Item ii) Considerations and complete notings with name and designation of competent authority, who decided to issue such instructions to withdraw 0.25 % to Senior Citizens by SBI, as Reserve Bank & Finance Ministry do not appear to have issued any instructions to reduce interest to Senior Citizens. As additional rate of interest to Senior Citizens was given by Reserve Bank, it may please be advised whether Reserve Bank was consulted before issuing such orders. It may also be advised under which rule/orders, SBI has issued such orders against the directives of Reserve Bank, making the life of 12 crore Elders of the Country to become poorer and unhappy. Reasons for reducing rates for Senior Citizens from 1-3-13 and for others from 1-4-13 are not given. Rates for Senior Citizens up to one year are reduced by ½ % and not ¼ %. Reasons for step motherly treatment are not given. All these actions are against directives of Reserve Bank and National Policy on Older Persons, 99 notified with approval of Cabinet.
Item iii) Please, give total excess interest at ½ % extra paid to Senior Citizens during 2011-12 by SBI and date from which it is reduced to 0.25% and how much is saved by SBI from that date till 30-4-13.
Item iv) You are allowing 1% more to the staff of Banks. Please, advise your considerations for continuing this.It is stated that this is as per directive of Reserve Bank. Similar directives are given by Reserve Bank for Senior Citizens and that too without any limit of 1% as for employees but higher to meet inflation by senior citizens. Reasons for such anti-elder decision by such a Public Sector big bank affecting 12 crore Elders of the Country are required to be given even as per Sec 4 (d) of RTI Act, 2005.

(8) Prayer or relief sought: To take back this reduction with back effect from 1-3-13, pay back the difference with interest and give more liberal extra rate to Elders of the Country instead of doing mockery of Elders by giving only ¼ % extra!

(9) Grounds for the prayer or relief: Provision in Naitonal Policy, 99 (Para 29) lays down that the contributors should feel assured that the payments at the end of stipulated period are attractive enough to take care of the likely erosion in purchasing power due to erosion.

(10) Any other information relevant to the appeal: Reserve Bank and Finance Ministry have given in writing that they have not issued any orders to reduce rates for Senior Citizens.

Back ground: Government of India with approval of Cabinet issued National Policy, 99 for welfare of Senior Citizens giving Mandate & Policy Statement to all Public & Private Stake Holders to take effective steps to improve the quality of life of all Elders, strengthen their legitimate place in society and help them to live their last spell of life with purpose, dignity and peace (Paras 12 to 29). Para 29 lays down that these Elder contributors should feel assured that the payments at the end of stipulated period are attractive enough to take care of the likely erosion in purchasing power due to erosion. Para 31 lays down that age related discrimination in the matter of entitlement to credit marketing and other facilities will be removed. Reserve Bank and all Public Sector Undertakings including Banks are the stake holders of this Policy and apex authority of Government to sponsor and support programmes of the Government. Reserve Bank of India vide their Master circular DBOD no. Dir.BC.1/13-03.00/2012-13 dt 2-7-12 has authorized all Banks to formulate with approval of their Board of Directors fixed Deposit Schemes for senior Citizens, offering higher and fixed rates of interest as compared to normal deposits of other citizens. State Bank of India is the biggest and most Profit Earning Bank and has a moral & Corporate Social Responsibility, having laid down obligation (para 29-31 of NPOP,99 & RBI Directives) towards senior citizens of the Country. Looking to their profits, they should give very higher rate of interest to Senior Citizens to to take care of the likely erosion in purchasing power due to ever increasing inflation.
Decision No. 2701/IC(A)/2008 on 27-6-08 from Chief Information Commissioner, Delhi also reads as under:- ``The Respondents has adopted a National Policy on Older Persons, which has not been effectively implemented. The Senior Citizens are, therefore, deprived of the benefits assured to them. The Respondent is, therefore, directed to clearly outline the Plan of Action and indicate its outcome for the larger benefits of the Society.`` 

We shall be thankful, if appropriate directives to State Bank in this case are issued.

Thanking You,
Yours Sincerely,
Copy to Gita Narsimhan, General Manager, Marketing & Cross Selling, Corporate Sector, 13th floor, State Bank of India, Madam Cama Road, Mumbai-400021.
Copy to General Manager, Reserve Bank of India, Monetary Policy Department, Central Office, 13th floor, NCOB, Sahid Bhagatsingh Road, P.B. 406, Mumbai-400001 for necessary action to advise all Banks about various provisions of  National Policies of Government of India for welfare of Senior Citizens and for SUO MOTU disclosure in their Web Sites as per DOPT`s directive no. 1/6/2011-IR dt 15-4-13.

Copy to Shri Anna Rai, Director & A.A., Room no. 12A, 3rd floor,  Ministry of Finance, Department of Financial Services (DA Section), Jeevan Deep Building, 10 Parliament Street, New Delhi-110001 for similar action. 

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