Consumer Forum fined SBI for causing ‘mental agony’ to customer, SBI deducted minimum balance charges

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The Namakkal District Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (DCDRC), on Thursday, slapped a ₹34,500 fine on the State Bank of India (SBI) branch in Coimbatore, for deducting a fine for an account-holder not maintaining a minimum balance in their savings account.

S. Yasodha (62), a resident of Velandipalayam in Coimbatore district, has a savings account with SBI, and also a deposit account at the branch in Saibaba Colony. In May 2017, ₹831 was in her savings account and ₹1.44 lakh was in her deposit account.

From May 2017 to December 2017, the bank deducted a fine from her savings account for not maintaining a minimum balance. When she raised the issue with the bank, the bank refunded the amount deducted from the account. But again in January and February 2018, the bank deducted ₹69 (Rs. 34.50 per month). When she again raised the issue, the bank refunded ₹34.50 only for the month of January but did not refund the amount deducted for February.

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Following this, Yasodha filed a case through her husband, Shanmugasundram, at the Coimbatore DCDRC in 2018. For a speedy trial, the case was transferred to the Namakkal DCDRC in July 2022.

On Thursday, August 17, 2023, DCDRC Commissioner V. Ramaraj directed SBI bank to pay the ₹34.50 deducted from Ms. Yasodha’s account and also to pay ₹34,500 for mental agony caused, within four weeks.

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