I’ve always had a phobia of banks. They kept making me think of a teacher waiting to punish me because I wrote something wrong in one of their precious forms. When I was younger, I had terrible stage fright, that’s pretty much what happens to me every time I have to deal with a bank.
Ever since I started working at OKF, I’ve had trouble with my bank, Axis Bank. I’ve received Wire Transfers to my account several times in the past, and never had to do anything. But for some reason this time, I ran into trouble. Axis bank promises “Direct Credit to your Axis account in less than 48 hours” . I’m, of course, willing to give a leeway of 48 hours more. But the last for 3 times, it’s taken 12 days. Transfers are made out on 10th every month and I receive them on 22nd. This was true for both December and January.
The first payment at OKF wasn’t released into my account until I called the call center about 2 to 3 times and logged a complaint. Finally, I was told to contact my branch, who redirected me to the Forex Department. After being transferred around since nobody was sure who was the right person, explaining the entire problem, I finally got transfered to the right person. As soon as I told him my name, he started with “We’ve been trying to contact you.” This was just surprising and out of the blue. My bank has my phone number, email, and home address. How the hell did they try to contact me? Iris Messages? Because, I definitely didn’t get a call, an email, or a letter. I went to the bank because they wanted me to fill up a form. He turned out to be the Deputy Manager in the Forex Department and insisted that the form had to be filled in original and they wanted a copy of my invoice before they released my money. I don’t know if this is what they call Stockholm Syndrome, but I played along in November, December, and January because there were other things happening in my life that didn’t allow me to change banks.
A payment was made into my account on the March 1, 2013. Today is March 15, 2013. I went to the bank on Wednesday, the 13th, to fill up the form, assuming my money would be released then. Except it wasn’t. It’s been 2 full weeks, how are you guys dealing with wire transfers? With carrier pigeons? Because they’d be faster. I’ve checked with my other colleague in India, and he definitely gets the money faster than me. It takes 7 days for him, which is the max he’s seen. I’ve never seen money come into my account any faster than 10 days.
I can imagine some of this is part of RBI’s strict control about foreign currency and all that. But seriously? This is just hurting those of us who deal with international transfers on a regular basis for completely legal reasons. First step, I’m going to change banks. As soon as I receive the money for this month, I’m going to walk into an SBI branch and open an account. I’ve talked to a bunch of people and least troublesome bank so far seems to be SBI. And It also helps that they give the best exchange rate. And this morning I’ve been greeting ironic news of Axis, HDFC, and ICICI are being alleged to be assisting with money laundering. I almost thought that was from Faking News.
PS: This post was written in extreme anger. I may end up withdrawing it later, but hell, I had to write it and get it off my chest.