12 March 2017


Posted by Vinoth Subramanian | Sunday, March 12, 2017 Categories: , ,

Usually, this Blog tries to unveil of good people. But, this post doesn’t fall in the category of posing any of such. Ironically, I am forced to write about an insolent officer. I’ve no personal vengeance on her. Had anybody hurt me in person, I would have written a mysterious script. But, her attitude is a social issue and threat to our region I felt hence, I compose this post.

Sometimes, I make calls on behalf of my branch with my manager’s consent. At times, I attend calls and answer customers also. Even our regional manager has permitted me for making and attending calls. A year ago, I had some personal demands. My manager kept calling our personal administrative department to resolve. Unfortunately, she couldn’t reach them. Each and every regional office would possess one personal administrative department which is meant to resolve the grievances of staffs of various branches of a particular region. Every banker would know this. I give this detail as the outsiders of banks also should understand the system. Coming to the point, I made a call to the personal administrative department, located in our regional office after getting the permission from my manager. A female officer picked up on the other end. Since it was our first conversation, I don’t remember what I demanded. Simultaneously, I never expected that she would go very violent over the phone. Her answer was very crisp and clear when I called for the first time.

“She hasn’t come today.” She said and hung up. I thought she was busy.

It is an indirect way of saying that I have no connection with your demands. She didn’t give not even a second to say “okay” to her reply. What I heard was slamming the receiver. Next day I called.

“That sir didn’t come.” It was the only word she uttered then the call got disconnected. What she said was not an issue but, how she said was worth considerable. Whenever I thought of calling that department, I hesitated to talk to her. However, she only attended my calls in the beginning. There are some moments still remaining to share. Once I approached the department regarding my confirmation, she picked up and spoke but, I didn’t get her properly.

“Hello.” I uttered the word second time. That’s all! Her tone became furious.

“Tell me!” She yelled. I said I didn’t get my confirmation yet.

“Did police come for verification?” She asked. I said no.

“Why are you calling now? Call after the verification.”

“Ma’am,” I paused a second and asked her, “Where would they come from?”

“You should ask that in the police department.”

“In which police station? Where?” I asked myself for she already slammed the receiver. I was literally shocked for the reason behind her insolent response and unnecessary anger.

“If bankers answered like cops, how would cops answer?” I asked myself. When an employee is employed in a particular government job, the concerned department of the employee would send the employee’s details to a particular police station or a police official to verify. How can I search without knowing where my details are sent? Yet I kept enquiring with our nearby police station. They said no details have come yet. To tell the truth, cops were very polite in responding.

Calling her was not a good option I thought. Simultaneously, I had no other option also. Then only I was suggested that I could approach another female officer working in the same department. I waited for few more days. There was no improvement in my confirmation. One of my colleagues found the major fault in my salary. There was an error in my basic pay. Once again having no other option, I approached the personal administrative department of our regional office. As usual, same number, called by the same caller, at the same department, to the same officer and for a change this time she came with the different reaction.

“Why are you calling direct number sir?” She said and slammed. I was shocked this time. We call for emergency. Moreover, we are not outsiders or customers. If the number is not meant to be called even by your own staff what is the purpose of having it? She had almost burned my patience without mercy. Simultaneously, I never had such reaction from any department when I approached at their direct number. Of course, they would be busy. They would not be picking the call even. But, nobody said not to call their direct number.

From then on, I decided not to deal with her regarding any grievances. As some of my colleagues suggested, I began approaching the other officer. Whenever, she picked up the call, my first word was “Vinothini ma’am please.”

Vinothini ma’am, one of the responsible officers in the department. I should say that she only made some efforts to resolve my grievances. Whenever, I approached her, she listened to me with patience and she answered too! Not only that, she had responded also for my colleague’s needs.  She only guided me for my confirmation. It was she who said where my details has been dispatched. Only then, I was able to proceed to the police department. As a staff, I sincerely extend my gratitude to her. To tell the truth, cops response were more polite than that arrogant officer’s.

I would not have composed about her had the recent incident not happened.

We got a mail from our regional office that each and every staff of each and every branch of Indian Overseas Bank including sub-staff has to enroll their attendance through biometric identification with the approval of the branch administrator. Of course, branch manager is the administrator of the branch. That is where exactly the drama began. Our manager was on leave that day. Hence, we called and informed our RCC. They asked us to send a mail to change the administrator of the branch we complied. Then, they advised us to inform our personal administrative department (PAD.) We sent a mail and decided to inform over the phone. Since that female officer already chided on calling the direct number, in order to avoid unnecessary problems, I tried with the regional office to connect with the concerned department. Unfortunately, the office number was busy. Then, it was not attended. Finally, when they picked and connected via intercom, there was no one to pick up the call in PAD. Having no other option, I informed my assistant manager. As it was a significant issue, we decided to go for the direct number. I had a small rehearsal on my mind of what to speak and how. I thought of handing over the receiver to my assistant manager but, soon withdrew my opinion. As she already sent mail, my job was only to communicate.

There I called, there she picked up!

“Hello.” She responded.

Million thanks to Graham Bell not for inventing telephone but for uttering the word ‘Hello’ after the invention. Some people say it was not ‘hello’ but ‘Ahoy’. That’s not a debate here. Just imagine what would have happened had Bell had not uttered the ‘hello’ after his invention? The entire world would have gone silent after picking up telephonic calls. But, she would have certainly gone violent after picking it!

To come back to the incident, after her response, I inhaled and began.

“Veppampattu branch two of our staffs are ordered biometric enrollment for attendance our manager is on leave today so we need to change the system administrator from our manager to the assistant manager we informed in RCC they asked us to talk to you we sent you a mail also.” I uttered without any punctuation mark and took a breath. I’ve understood her very well. If we put comma or semicolon in our speech, she will put full stop to the whole conversation without any second thought and that’s why I had to hurry my words. The receiver was kept aside without any word. I was wondering what to do next. There was a prolonged silence for a minute.

“I don’t know whether she’s on line or not ma’am.” I told our assistant manager.

“What happened Vinoth?” She asked me.

“I informed her. She didn’t speak even a single word after hearing the whole. I heard the sound of keeping the receiver aside. But, no reaction as of now. It looks like the call is still on. But, there is no noise on the other end ma’am.” I replied my assistant manager and placed the receiver on my ear again.

Silence sustained.

Had she uttered the sentence ‘one minute’ ‘one moment’ ‘one second,’ I would not have been confused. What to do? Those courteous words and sentences never existed in her dictionary.

“She’s on line! I can hear the typing sound!” I told my assistant manager and thought of handing over the phone.

“What’s your branch code?” She asked me from the other end.

Once again I dropped the idea of handing over the phone and answered.

“2772 ma’am.”

“What’s your roll number?”

“Do you want mine? Actually, our assistant manager has to be made administrator. One minute ma’am. Her roll number is,”

“Who are you? Call after your manager comes.”

“Ma’am! One minute please! She’s here.” She slammed when I was saying and my mouth was consciously begging with remaining words, “I’m clerical only. I will give the phone ma’am.” I understood that they were all unnecessary words but, came out.

 “She disconnected ma’am.” I told my assistant manager. I called again. She didn’t attend. I called after three minutes and she picked.

“One minute.” I said and immediately gave the receiver to my assistant manager. She kept on saying ‘hello’ nearly ten times. No response. We really didn’t know what to do.

I dialed the office number to connect with the department. A male staff tried but couldn’t. “I’ll give that madam’s mobile number sir.” He said and put the receiver down. I conveyed the message to my assistant manager.

“We have her mobile number.” She said and I dialed.

Then she dialed. No response.

Once again. I dialed the direct number.

“Give me when it rings Vinoth.” My assistant manager said. It rang; I gave.

It looked like finally that officer picked up. My assistant manager was uttering the same words thrice in different emotion.

“I was in the counter ma’am.” Her tone was casual.

“No ma’am, I was in the counter as staffs were on leave.” Little softened.

“No ma’am, I tried, I— I—was in the counter—and—asked to try-- try.” Her tone was Very tedious this time.

“We already sent a mail ma’am.”

“Okay ma’am.”

We asked her ‘what happened ma’am’ after the call.

I thought she would have respected our assistant manager at least. But, certain things can never happen in the world.

Here’s the conversation.

“Can’t you call for your work?”

“I was in the counter ma’am.”

“Do you need somebody to call on behalf of you?”

“No ma’am, I was in the counter as staffs were on leave.”

“Will you let anybody and everybody talk with me or what?”

“No ma’am, I tried, I— I—was in the counter—and—asked to try-- try.”

“Send a mail.”

“We already sent a mail ma’am.”

“Send now.”

“Okay ma’am.”

We had send the mail around 2:30 and it was activated after an hour.

I accept that she had directly descended from heaven. I accept that she is superior enough to ill-treat me. I also accept that she doesn’t like to converse with me as I am after all a clerical staff. But, on what bases she disconnected the call? Can she justify? Had she not wanted to talk to me, what should a matured officer have done? She should have ordered me to give over the receiver to our assistant manager. Isn’t it? Let it be. She snarled our assistant manager for letting me talk to her for her needs. Practically speaking, the problem was mine. I was one of the staffs to enroll for biometric identification and that’s why I wanted to talk to her directly. Is that justification enough?

If she can’t respect others, she can respond. If she can’t respond, she can reply. If she can’t reply, she can react at least. I don’t think she has done any of the above.
If not from human being, she could have learned to respect others at least from IVR. It will not take much time to disclose her name. But, the purpose of this post is to register the pain and not to retaliate with words. This is not a criticism against a particular officer but a caution to my bank with concern. I’m not complaining about anybody but, communicating about somebody to everybody. It will be fine if the scale 1 officer could measure her attitude at least in the future.


  1. Vinoth, this incident is worth a short story. I have a doubt: if you wanted to file a complaint on such a downgrading behavior of that staff, how could you go about it? Second, does she know that you're a blind person?

  2. Definitely should be escalated .. Not as a complaint atleast d superiors shld know dat person shld b replaced by someone who can respond better .. If this continues many will suffer just like u suffered..


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