Tribal people protested at Bank of India for passbook entry and BC charges

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Under the leadership of the Adivasi Dalit Sangathan, a group of tribal men and women staged a protest at the Bank of India in Pati on Monday. Pati, Barwani is a village & Tehsil in Barwani district in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh.

They surrounded the bank demanding that passbooks be made mandatory for all account holders. The issue at hand revolved around the fact that passbooks were not being provided to accounts opened through kiosks and BC points in tribal areas. This meant that tribal individuals had no official record of their transactions, leaving them vulnerable to exploitation. Unscrupulous kiosk and BC operators took advantage of this situation, siphoning off the hard-earned money of the tribal community.

To rectify this injustice, the protesters called for the bank to allocate a fixed amount to kiosk and BC operators for every transaction. These operators should not have the authority to charge any fees to customers. Shockingly, women from Kalakhet and Golpativadi recounted stories of individuals being charged exorbitant fees, ranging from 30 to 50 rupees, for every thousand rupees withdrawn at these kiosks.

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Another grievance voiced by the protesters was related to the Ladli Behna Yojana, a government scheme providing financial support to women. Despite receiving Rs. 1250, women claimed that they only received Rs. 950 or Rs. 1100 after deductions. In response to the tribals’ demands, the bank issued a clarification letter, assuring that no ban would be imposed on providing passbooks to any account holder. Furthermore, the bank stated that kiosk operators would not levy any additional charges during transactions.

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