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Banks a dream, 'Muslim Malegaon' deserves not even ATMs

Monday September 12, 2011 07:37:11 PM, Staff Reporter

Malegaon: Union Minorities Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid during an orientation workshop for the National level officials empanelled for monitoring various schemes rolled out for minorities held in New Delhi June this year reiterated the UPA government’s commitment to their welfare. Earlier, Maharashtra - the only state in the country having a Minority Development department, had also announced monitoring mechanism for the same task. However, for the people of Malegaon, one of the minority concentrated region listed in the Prime Minister’s 15-point program, the government’s endeavour for a better scheme implementation proves futile.

“Part of the welfare schemes formulated based on the recommendations of the Sachar Committee is multi-sectoral development program, which besides other initiatives, urges the bankers to open branches in minority concentrated areas. But far from establishing banks, the bankers are not even installing Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) in the eastern part of Malegaon”, Naseem Ahmed, a local trader, said to

The eastern part of Malegaon, which forms 80% of the town is 99% Muslim populated and does not have a single nationalized bank. The only bank which is there in this area is a scheduled bank run by a local Muslim co-operative society. Interestingly, it is this part of Malegaon that gives the banks maximum number of accounts. Yet the banks do not install any ATM here.

To make the situation even more difficult for the natives the 5-6 ATMs which the town has in the western part, do not function during the festivals, the time when people need cash the most.

“These ATMs which are located very far from the Muslim localities, do not function during the Eid festival citing one reason or the other. I experienced the problem this year as well as in previous years”, Naseem added.

When contacted the bankers to know the reasons, they could not give any satisfactory reply. They just said that in the eastern part they did not get suitable place to install ATMs and declined to elaborate what they meant by a ‘suitable place’.

About the defunct ATMs during the festival time, an official from Dena Bank on the condition of anonymity said, “During festival times there is tremendous load as more and more people withdraw cash and this might be one of the reasons why these machines stop working.”

Tired of the bankers' pathetic attitude, some local traders and businessmen are now mobilising people to withdraw their entire balance from their accounts ahead of the festival times.

“We are contacting people and urging them to keep their balance nil during the festival times if the banks do not ensure corrective measures”, said Salim Qayyum, member of Malegaon Industries’ & Manufacturers’ Association (MIMA).






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