Demonetisation: To hell with cashless society, who's going to pay the bai on 1 December?
People pay their monthly rent for housing by cash, contrary to the current happy little myth that all of India is tech savvy and on the fast track to a cashless society.
This might antagonise the geniuses out there who find it simple to resolve their financial quandaries, I am tired of all the reports about the money being fed into banks and the money that has been recovered. Instead of all these zeroes being flung like snowballs, I need to know plain, basic things that many of us foolish ones need to juggle with to keep things going.
These numbers are too cosmic for me and have no relevance whatsoever to my daily life.
Some of the questions that beg answers and also receive a fair amount of ridicule if you ask them are actually quite relevant when you have to pay your bills. The smart people you know (all smarter than you) treat you with scorn because they think you have a two-digit financial IQ and they have all the answers.
How will you pay the salaries of your staff next week? Especially domestic staff, part-timers, and the group of people you are responsible for if you run a tiny company and have a payroll of six or seven. All of which was always cash.
Go ahead, transfer it their accounts, easy peasy, don’t be so dense.
Maybe your banker is one sweetheart of a person but have you tried getting through the queue and asking a banker to make the transfer while eleven other people are screaming themselves hoarse.
Then asking him to make another one and then another one and then another one. Smack. Have you even tried to locate the forms to fill for such a slew of transfers? And do you know how many people do not want a transfer into their accounts.
You think the part-time cleaning lady wants a cheque? Go ask her, see what she says.
People pay their monthly rent for housing by cash, contrary to the current happy little myth that all of India is tech savvy and on the fast track to a cashless society. For sheer tommyrot this one is hard to beat.
Just because you and a couple of well off buddies are into these new fiscal buzzwords does not indicate a sea-change. E-cash, cashless wallets, e-commerce, digital economy, online purchasing, yes sure, awesome, but the bai wants her thousand bucks in hundred rupee notes mate and she is knocking on the door. And the dhobi says we are behind in our payments.
That is life. Not these esoteric numbers and labels. The landlords probably do not ever show the true rental on their taxes. So what if they insist on the payment to be done in cash because suddenly where did this ‘income’ come from, Oh! rent on the house but you were showing much less all these years?
Okay, let’s say they agree to take a cheque. At the best of times getting a fresh cheque book is like climbing Mt Everest without oxygen. It takes days unless, of course you have a banker who is a teddy bear and darling and all my advisors clearly know people like him so they can sneer at my ineptitude. But I do not so I have to indent for one and wait.
How many cheques are we going to dish out?
Tried giving a Rs 2000 note to a shop to purchase cough syrup and somebody has very successfully managed to poison the mind over the ‘suspicious’ genesis of the Rs 2000 note and a whole surgical examination is done by putting it to the light and rubbing it and showing it to two other assistants then nodding sadly and returning it. There is a marked antipathy to the note and most folks do not want it.
If I take out Rs 24000 which I am told is the maximum and pay cash for the nursing staff we have, medicines, the cook and the laundry, electricity, water, the TV connection, the society conservancy and the running account with the grocery and the rental assuming that they do take a cheque we will be swimming in the red on the first of the month.
How do we then pay for milk, vegetables, medicines, in city travel, repairs, maintenance, and the string of ‘little’ expenses that all mount up like paying the newspaper vendor.
Think of it, every doctor I have met in a clinic takes cash. Will he accept my cheque or my Rs 2000 note. How I envy all the people in the cashless society who are so above these silly problems.
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