Demonetisation, Few Hours in a Queue

It was nearly three and a half hour in the queue. My legs were hurting. I was trying to block my pain by thinking of time when my turn to go inside the bank will come. Since the time bank allowed cash withdrawal to proceed, hardly six people had moved in. There was no sign of those people emerging from bank. A lady officer tried to console us by saying “you know it takes a lot of time to complete a transaction. Bank has to count money, verify ID, and complete so many formalities. It is not easy. We have been working overtime for so many days.” What she did not tell us was that to cash a single cheque from one account takes not more than five minutes. So something else was happening inside that we did not know. A few people went in with the ruse that they have to check in their locker. We had heard many people are using the same excuse to gain entry in the bank bypassing queues.

We heard an angry voice. A well dressed gentleman standing at the far end of the line was very angry. “Are you guys even working? You allowed so many people to go in. This is a disgrace” he screamed in crisp english in an authoritarian voice. Looked like he holds a high position. He, it appeared, is used to barking command at people. Hoi polloi like us were impressed. “Look how well he spoke in English. He simply shut the lady up. Finally some one is speaking up. Time has arrived to fix the system.” 

Bank lady also understood. She immediately rushed to the gentleman. “Sir are you a senior citizen? Why don’t you come and stand in senior citizens queue?” Initially the gentleman rejected. Gradually, rejection became feeble. He evaluated he had no realistic chance from where he was, to get money that day. By contrast, senior citizens line was much shorter. So he said “ok. I shall go.” There went our righteous protestor and our protest fizzled. To rest of us who were not sharply dressed, bank lady looked with condescension anyway. She shouted back at us, if we asked question. Another warrior succumbed on the face of  personal interest. That is how most revolution fizzle out.

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