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A Woman Dragged Her 100-Year-Old Mother To The Bank On A Cot, The Bank Suspends The Bank Manager. Let’s Recognise That We’ve It Very Easy

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Sometimes I think this pandemic has brought out the worst in all of us. People everywhere are suffering either from the coronavirus or from the repercussions and chaos that it has brought along with it. With no work happening and no money coming in people are vulnerable and desperate. The plight of the underprivileged sector just keeps getting worse during this pandemic. 

The reason I am pondering over this is that a few day’s ago a video surfaced showing 60-year-old woman in Odisha’s Nuapara district, pulling her 100-year-old mother on a cot to withdraw money from the bank. That video is extremely hard-hitting and it made me question a lot of things. 

Let me elaborate, on June 9th, 60-year-old Punjimati Dei was dragging her bed-ridden mother Labhe Baghel to the Baragaon branch of Utkal Grameen Bank to withdraw Rs 1,500. This was pension money that was deposited in the bank account’s of women under the Jan Dhan Yogana which aims at helping the underprivileged through this COVID-19 crisis. 

Also Read: Sex Workers Are Displaced, Starving And Facing A Dearth Of Healthcare Amidst The Pandemic. Their Future Remains Precarious

The thing is, the bank had allegedly refused to give the money to the daughter without the physical verification of the 100-year-old beneficiary. So, the woman, who is a senior citizen herself, was left with no choice but to drag her bed-ridden mother all the way in the peak of the summer season. 

Now, on Monday which is just 5 days after this video went viral on social media the Utkal Grameen Bank has suspended the bank’s manager of the Bargaon branch Ajit Pradhan on the order of the state government. The State Bank of India who is the largest stakeholder in Utkal Grameen Bank gave the direction for this action. 

A statement from the SBI read, “While the Branch Manager did not have any intention of harassment, the unfortunate developments have resulted out of a communication gap resulting in a display of inhuman and insensitive approach in the bank’s treatment of senior citizens. Utkal Grameen Bank regrets the whole incident and the matter is being looked into for necessary action.”  

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I, for one, am glad that the manager has been suspended but the question here is, who is really to blame? From the sound of things, the manager is just a scapegoat. This incident is a testament to our depleting levels of humanity. That woman had to drag her bed-ridden mother all the way to the bank just so that she could withdraw the money that is rightfully hers. If the government has facilities to help the underprivileged people through this crisis, those facilities need to be readily accessible. 

That being said, it’s great that the bank and the state government have taken such swift action but this video is just one instance out of a hundred. People who come from low economic backgrounds have been struggling to make ends meet and to stay afloat during this crisis. It just makes you think that while we are only required to hop into an ATM for cash, not everyone has it that easy.  

We need to help ease their problems, not make things tougher for them.

Meet Kamalathal, The 85-Year-Old Lady, Who Has Been Serving Idlis To Migrant Workers For Just 1 Rupee During This Crisis


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