Recently at one of the City Back Offices of the top Indian Public Sector Bank, a CTS (Cheque Truncation System - New Cheques with improved security features) cheque signed by the Chief Minister of that particular Indian State was presented. The said cheque could not be passed because balance in the Chief Minister's account was insufficient.

The verifying officer was hesitating to return the cheque signed by the Chief Minister of the state where he was posted. He referred the matter to his Senior Manager. The Senior Manager said that he would reply only after consulting his higher authorities.

Meanwhile the verifying officer called the branch where the Chief Minister had opened his account. The Branch Manager advised the officer to pass the cheque and that he will call the Chief Minister's office to arrange for the necessary funds in due course. The officer was not satisfied with his reply, so he kept the matter pending.

The officer commented that had he informed the office of the political party to which the Chief Minister belonged, the party workers would have credited his account immediately. This would have enabled the officer to get rid of the said cheque immediately.

The officer checked the account of the Cheif Minister after an hour or so, and found that the balance was still insufficient and that the Branch Manager had made no arrangements. He called the Branch Manager and enquired about the issue. The Branch Manager started digging up old issues he had with the City Back Office, instead of resolving the issue at hand.

The unsatisfied officer called the Regional Office and informed them about the matter. The Regional Office called the Branch Manager and asked him to provide TOD (Temporary Overdraft) to the Chief Minister's account. The Branch Manager followed the directions of the Regional Office. Finally the officer was able to pass the said cheque.

Now it was the Branch Manager's responsibility to recover the TOD amount from the new Chief Minister's old personal account with the bank or any which ways possible.

Had it been a cheque belonging to a common man, the officer would not have spoken to his Senior Manager or to the Branch Manager or the Regional Office. Nobody would have provided a TOD to a common man. Most of the times the common man deposits money but the clearing houses reject their cheques merely because the balance was insufficient at the time of verification of the said cheque. A common man calls the Clearing House through the branch where he deposited his cheque and requests to pass the cheque, but his request falls on deaf ears.

A learning experience indeed.

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