I could have called it the wish list also, but I chose to call it the Open Letter…here it is

Dear Sir,

You have done a good job of managing the RBI – and there are many people saying that. Yes you are the rock star, half marathon running, well educated, articulate RBI governor which many countries would love to have. Having said that, I wish you turn your eye to the retail side of the business. After all it is the lazy, idiotic, stupid retail customer who leaves so much money in the savings account that even your worst banks look profitable.

After all it is the retail guy who gives your corrupt bank employees to lend tons of money to builders. These builders use that money to jack up prices. Then the same people borrow money at a higher rate so that YOUR BANKING SYSTEM can survive. So please ensure that the retail customer is not cheated so much that the bank has no money for page 3 lending. There is an Ambani who has borrowed much more than what he can repay, at least from his current cash flows.

Let me enumerate what a typical Relationship Manager does to a client..and which should stop:

  1. I have no clue why my RM has access to my bank account. She calls me saying “Sir $ 324 just got credited to your account..in case you get $ regularly we have a product for you”. Oh thank you very much, but no thanks. Similarly she knows what is my credit card payment TO ANOTHER BANK…so she calls me and says “Sir we can also give you a palladium card with a limit….”. Sorry Mr. Rajan I do not care what you think, but my RM (she is a very sweet kid) should  not have access to my bank account.
  2. This access also gives her the ‘right’ to call and offer me various products which are completely unsuitable for me. I know what is unsuitable for me, but 99% of the population which is banking with your banking system has no clue.
  3. All the good work of the Jhan Dhan program will soon be undone by your RMs misselling 3rd party products.
  4. Banks selling Real Estate is the pits. Hsbc has sold RE to an unsuspecting client and she is a middle aged widow with a son who is partly challenged. This RR takes the cake. I have heard Devil takes the hindmost but your bank RMs just finish off the client.
  5. Selling equity brokerage accounts, loan against shares, loan against property….will you please ask them to do banking.
  6. Do you know that ‘mis-selling’ , up selling, pushing ULIP etc. are considered to be virtues by all banks?
  7. Do you know that ONLY, ONLY, ONLY people who have done stints in Singapore and Hongkong even worry about mis-selling?
  8. Do you know that Wealth Managers have Sales Targets not wealth targets?
  9. Do you know a few people in my house call me AS SOON AS THEY get a call from a bank..asking me ‘is it necessary for me to do that’ ?
  10. Do you know a 84 year old aunt has give my phone number in her bank account so that the bank stops pitching products to her?
  11. Do you know that MOST senior citizens (very well educated, alert and articulate) are afraid to go to a bank because they are either sold to, talked down to, or treated shabbily by your bank staff?
  12. Can we not have small banks which will NOT BE ALLOWED TO SELL anything? Just savings account and fixed deposits?
  13. Project finance consulting is the nomenclature for brokers, the people whom you have supposedly banned.
  14. The Accounting profession’s nexus with your banks is shameful. Yes there are exceptions, but audits are surely a waste of time.
  15. Please create a bank to cater to people at the lower end of the strata with clear targets – your mainline banks hate dealing with them.
  16. The account becoming ‘inactive’ in 3 months is a joke and a big pain for people who do not have too many transactions.
  17. Merge a few banks, and stop other banks from lending to anybody other than car loans, mortgages and personal loans..

sorry actually the list is longer..but will allow my readers to add a few more in the comments section…

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  1. Dear Sir,
    I am a regular follower of your blogs and its all gives us good vision & ideas how to survive in the wild financial world. Appreciating…
    Keep it up………
    Babitha L

  2. I have recently faced the issue of inactive account, my wife is having an account in her native which is meant for agriculture purposes and when she went to bank for making a transaction bank manager have asked her to pay Rs. 200 for making her account active as it went to dormant as there are no transactions in last 4 months.

    How silly it is?

  3. @Raj,
    Create two accounts and standing instructions to move exactly same amount of money, say Rs. 500/- every three months from one to the other.
    Ensure you create these instructions on different days so its not that obvious. Silliness can only be faced with nonsense.

  4. This reminds me of the barber shop where a senior citizen who has come just for a hair cut, but the barber would keep pushing for a facial, face massage and what non sense. For God sake, poor guy just cannot get a simple hair cut without getting harassed.

  5. Dear LuckyOye,

    I am sure that your advice is well-intentioned, but create two accounts? Really ???

    When I was more ignorant, I ended up opening more than one bank account. I am now in the process of consolidating them to just one. It is a pain to handle multiple accounts.

    Subra’s advice – “one savings account, one demat account, one trading account” is the best I have heard till date, on the topic !!

    The RD idea does sound better to me, but i’m not a professional on the subject…

  6. Your point 10. Just not senior citizin, people in 30s like me are wary and completely avoid going to a bank. The moment they enter my customer account number they start pestering me to buy some product or the other. Sometimes they are trying to sell me a product that I already bought! If nothing works they are pushing in to do an FD… 😐

  7. I have account in I*I*I bank, the sales manager called me on sep 29th and asked to keep as much money in my sb acc, for the sake of half yearly closing.

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