Citibank thinks they are too smart


We get complicent because of technology & couple of goodwill moves… This is what I had to experience with Citibank… I was a prowd account owner of Citibank because they made my bank online without any hassele even when Online Banking penetration was at a nasent stage…

I trusted them for their process & technology edge… I registered for mobile & email alerts for all transactions… Since I use to get those alerts I took them for granted with the trust I had on them…

A week back I transferred for one of my EMI which goes through Citibank… I promptly received an alert on mobile & email… This NEFT happened within 3 hours from transfering from another bank… I got surprised and I logged in to check if that was right…

Then I was in for another big surprise there was some charge for Rs.250/ + taxes for some charges…  This was deducted from the EMI money I transferred & my account fell 100 bucks short of required balance…

Now my question is?

  • What would have happened if I had not checked it.?
  • Are banks charges not applicable for  charges?

Such taking for granted attitude of banks upsets me… If I had not checked my Online Banking site accidentally I had to loose on;

  • Bounce Charge from both the banks.
  • A Black mark on my credibility.

Is that what I have to bare for trusting a leading bank in the world? Anyways it is time to be tentative and do the basics right even when we trust an entity.

This time it is CitiBank


I’m tired of having issues with Banks and getting them sorted. This time issue is with CitiBank. So, here is a small synopsis of what has happened;

I had a Citibank Shoppers Shop CreditCard with number 5189 **** **** 8011 and I’ve been using this card for more than 5 years. On 7th of December I made a payment to settle my monthly dues through CitiBank Online banking. The very next day I tried to book a bus ticket to Madurai and the transaction was getting rejected. Then I loggedin to my Online Banking Account only to find the card to be missing from my Online Banking.

Then I immediately called CitiBank’s call center and after lots of confirmation I was told that my card has been upgraded and when I asked for the current status. I was told that the card was sent for embossing & representative said I’ll be send my card later. When I asked for a commitment on getting my new card. She denied to give a commitment. I was tired of such irresponsible response from bankers.

With lots of frustration I said that was the primary card I’m using and I said I need it badly. I asked her to take a request to push the process. She immediately replied will take a note of my request and I’ll be getting my card based on clearance in the Queue.

I was discussing about this with my CFO and he said this is a Banking Violation and legally banks are not supposed to terminate a service owing to upgrade or new service and that too when a request is not made by the customer. He asked me to file a compliant. But I’m sick and tired of doing it and as usual let me flush it our in my mouth-piece and move forward.

Ending up the year with Elite Invitations


Start of this year I evolved a set of rules so as how I must lead a life this 2009 and that was one of my New Year Resolutions.  Some of the rules are;

  • Never travel by autos.
  • Never travel by flights.
  • Never buy premium products.

And more and to the best of my knowledge I kept to my resolution. But ending this year I’m getting invitation for all elite things;

Wills Life Style Invitation: Got a call from a representative from Wills Life Style for some surprise event at Park Sheraton, Chennai. The event is on 9th and the way the women invited me was funny.

She said the invitation is only for Premium Members and she said;

  • Free dinner Buffet
  • Gift Voucher for Rs.1000/-
  • Then a surprise gift on the day.

Then she asked for my confirmation to make up to the event. It sounded funny & the lady spoke to me in a way that if I come I’ll be offered dinner. It sounded how politicians gather crowd by offering Food & Cash. Like wise I’m also invited for Food + Cash (in the form of Gift Voucher.

On the serious part I wear only Will Life Style merchandise & I don’t know why this surprise event. Anyway let me keep my fingers crossed and hope it doesn’t become a disappointing night.

CEO Lifestyles: then I got a personal invite from organizers of CEO Lifestyles which is been conducted in Chennai Trade Center on 11th, 12th & 13th. I don’t know what to expect there and I don’t know how they got hold of me. Today I got a call from then asking for my commitment to make up on any one of the day.

This is a closely held event & everyone is not invited. At least that is what they told me. I might make it along with Bala on 11th (Friday).

HSBC Premium Account: Got a call from HSBC representatives and gave them an appointment to meet me. They are offering me a Premium account with all elite benefits. Even my bankers ICICI & CitiBank whit whom I’ve maintain my account for a long time and also having transacted huge amount of money I was not upgraded to Wealth Management Account.

I was surprised to get an offer from a bank where I didn’t have any relationship all these years. Might be someone working with ICICI or CitiBank must have jumped to HSBC.

In spite of me telling the bankers that I can’t maintain a big balance for a premium account. They said they will offer it even I’ve my account with zero balance.

Again this is a shocking experience and I don’t know what is happening around me.

All the things listed above happened last week and I don’t know if I really deserve them. Anyways I’m thrilled that I wanted to lead a very simple life and I was successful somewhat and now I’m getting all Elite things at the end of the year. Let me experience all the above and see how it turns up and will sure make a Blog post about the experience.

Indian Money with SWISS Bank


Latest update after Swiss Bank has agreed to disclose the funds…

Our Indians’ Money – 70, 00,000 Crores Rupees In Swiss Bank

1) Yes, 70 lakhs crores rupees of India are lying in Switzerland banks. This is the highest amount lying outside any country, from amongst 180 countries of the world, as if India is the champion of Black Money.

2) German Government has officially written to Indian Government that they (German Government) are willing to inform the details of holders of 70 lakh crore rupees in their Banks, if Indian Government officially asks them.

3) On 22-5-08, this news has already been published in The Times of India and other Newspapers based on German Government’s official letter to Indian Government.

4) But the Indian Government has not sent any official enquiry to Germany for details of money which has been sent outside India between 1947 to 2008.. The opposition party is also equally not interested in doing so because most of the amount is owned by politicians and it is every Indian’s money.

5) This money belongs to our country. From these funds we can repay 13 times of our country’s foreign debt. The interest alone can take care of the Center’s yearly budget. People need not pay any taxes and we can pay Rs. 1 lakh to each of 45 crore poor families.

6) Let us imagine, if Swiss Bank is holding Rs. 70 lakh crores, then how much money is lying in other 69 Banks? How much they have deprived the Indian people? Just think, if the Account holder dies, the bank becomes the owner of the funds in his account.

7) Are these people totally ignorant about the philosophy of Karma? What will this ill-gotten wealth do to them and their families when they own/use such money, generated out of corruption and exploitation?

8) Indian people have read and have known about these facts. But the helpless people have neither time nor inclination to do anything in the matter. This is like “a new freedom struggle” and we will have to fight this.

9) This money is the result of our sweat and blood.. The wealth generated and earned after putting in lots of mental and physical efforts by Indian people must be brought back to our country.

10) As a service to our motherland and you contribution to this struggle, please circulate this note amongst your friends and relatives and convert it into a mass movement by email forwards, blogs etc.

ICICI Bank and irony continues…


Again my irony with ICICI bank continues. I posted a blog showcasing my experience with them. You can this blog http://www.anandnataraj.com/me-icici-cibil for more info.

clip_image001Now I received this letter from ICICI bank on 22nd July 2009 which says a Lien was attached on my account for non payment my credit card. It further said they will be doing it within a week from the time they have dated the letter and I received the letter after a week. By that time the money was taken from my account on 21st July 2009. Also in the last line they have specified to call their representative Saravathi specifying two phone numbers that too without an STD code. When I tried calling those number from my mobile which is from Chennai region I got Error on connection. I assume that number is a Mumbai number, but I didn’t try coz I thought it was unnecessary to make an STD call and waste my money.

What surprised me is all this problem happened during the year 2005 and I made a settlement during 2007 and four years from the problem they have taken money from my account and even after two years of making the settlement they have not taken my name from defaulters list. Which means still my name is listed in CIBIL. Thought I didn’t apply for loan recently my credibility has been put on stake for mistake on the part of bank. Even on the first time it was not my mistake but I didn’t want to make it an issue. But again for the second time this Bank has proved they are irresponsible.

I’d like to get help of you readers to take the bank on all possible ways and I’d like to have your experience and thoughts. You can help me by giving

  • Legal opinion
  • Possible methods we can take the bank like thru media, legal, ombudsmen etc.
  • Please let me know if you know anyone from media and would like to expose banks irresponsible acts which causes trauma to customers.
  • Also feel free to post it in your blog, share this in twitter and other social media methods.  

Though the amount is not that big for me it created some issues to me are 

  • Paying attorneys which wasted my money
  • Had to call and inform everyone whom I issued to Cheque to stop doing it and then adjust them which has wasted time and caused unnecessary mental agony.

I want to take the bank and expose their act because banks don’t understand the value of a customer and they take us for granted.

Here is the scanned copy of settlement letter and transaction receipt issued by bank two years back.

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Me ICICI & CIBIL


Once upon a time way back in 2004 I was offered a credit card by ICICI Bank… I’m a big user of the plastic and I use it for my personal needs and also to settle my company bills… My normal use every month was around Rs.80,000/- and I promptly settle my dues on or before the due date…

 

Everything was going fine until I got an offer from SBI Bank Card for a 3 month interest free balance transfer… I thought it was an attractive offer and opted to take it up and I received a Cheque from SBI from their Delhi office… Then I promptly presented in ICICI bank 15 days before my due date and received an acknowledgement from ICICI bank…

 

Then I was shocked to see my next ICICI statement which had late payment fee, Interest and service tax… On verification I came to know they presented the Cheque 2 days before the due date and the Cheque got realized after 10 days from the date it was presented which was not my mistake…

 

I took it to all levels of their Customer Support people with all documents but they didn’t try to solve the issue instead they asked me to repay due which was around Rs.5000/-… After some time they started sending Collection agents for collection and every time I had to show them the acknowledgement slip… Over a point they started disturbing thru phone calls and sending agents to office and to my house… I thought I must take this legally but my friends said paying a lawyer fee for this amount is not a good idea…

 

Then during the year 2006 I wanted to purchase a Plot of land by taking a loan and my loan was rejected… Only then I came to know about CIBIL and I was told I was a defaulter… It was then I realized my mistake of not taking ICICI legally… Even at that point I had an opportunity to file a suit but at the cost of forgoing my investment plan… I tried to convince the other bank with all valid receipts and explanation… Even they didn’t accept my genuine case and asked me to settle my dues with ICICI first…

 

Then I was forced to make a settlement with ICICI and with the settlement letter I got my loan passed…

 

Now a year back I applied for a personal loan which got rejected stating that I was a defaulter… Now even after 2 years of making a settlement CIBIL has not removed my name from their database and in future too I’ve to undergo the irony of my loans getting rejected…

 

I was penalized for a mistake of an ICICI employee for presenting my Cheque late and for not taking legal action on time which worries me till date…

 

Now there is even more bad news for us… CIBIL is currently available only for Banks & Financial institutions and RBI has given them approval to provide service to other industry verticals like Telecom and Insurance… This means late payments of premiums and telephone / mobile bills will also be added to our credit history…

 

CIBIL is definitely a better system but they must evolve themselves quickly fix genuine cases too…

 

After a long time with the help of Money Today magazine go an answer to my problem to remove my name from CIBIL… I tried one of their recommendations and it was not effective and must try the second one… They have recommended two options;

 

  • Request the bank to take note of the changes and report it to CIBIL… (Tried without luck)…
  • Get the control number of your credit report from bank, then contact the CIBIL helpdesk (1800-224-225), quote this number and register the error…