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21 Feb 2024, Edition - 3144, Wednesday

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Empty wallet, happy me

Indrani Thakurata


Bengaluru: 500, 1000 notes banned to fight black money and corruption

Yesterday, my phone just kept beeping post 8:00 at night. There were a barrage of messages, some informative and others just plain memes. I couldn't stop laughing at some and the rest I deleted. But I must admit, my first reaction to the ban of 500 and 1000 rupee notes was shock and irritation. I was counting my notes and fretting about going to the bank and queuing up. But my initial resentment towards this move soon vanished and I joined other voices that welcomed it.

This was a masterstroke by Modi, as most national channels claimed, and I wanted to know how people around me had received it. Was it indeed well received? "I am very happy with this move. NaMo is by far one of the boldest PMs we have had. Though this comes just ahead of the UP elections, it will surely help curb black money. And I am happy as a common citizen," says Guru, a software professional working in NXP.

Adding to this, Shwetha MJ says, "Initial hiccups are bound to be there since it requires a lot of work on many fronts, but that shouldn't deter a move such as this. It was necessary." She makes it a point to mention how trivial her worries are, of queuing up at the bank, vis-a- vis a national move against corruption. "We as citizens wanted this, and we don't want to be disturbed even for a day for the greater good."

Chiranjit, a graphic designer, begs to disagree, "In the long run, this will not be helpful to retrieve money. As Yechury said, this isn't a well thought-out decision, it was taken in haste without considering the wage workers of the society who have no access to banks." Echoing similar worries, Sumitra Amma, who works as a house help in South Bangalore, says, "I have been putting all my wages in my almirah, I don't have the time to go to the bank, I am not sure what I will do now."

Countering his argument, Yamini, a manager working in Manyata Tech Park says, "The government has been working on opening accounts for wage workers and the like. They are being clearly instructed to do things. They have been kept in mind while doing this. This way, they will be encouraged to do so. It will get people such as those in the mainstream. Not only that, this will help fight corruption on many levels, terrorism, and the circulation of large volume of counterfeit currency. This will do a lot of good to the common man." We hope it does. We also hope that the daily wage workers are shown the way to the bank, and people are patient and helpful towards them.

As for me, I will borrow my friend’s post on Facebook, "Never ever have I been so happy to have an empty wallet."

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