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‘Whenever I Go to the Bank, I Am Told that the Machine is Not Functioning’

Accountability Initiative Staff

8 December 2020

The ‘Inside Districts’ series launched in April is a one-of-its-kind attempt to capture the experiences of district and Block-level officials, panchayat functionaries, beneficiaries and frontline workers, on their challenges and best practices.

This interview was conducted with a Beneficiary in Gaya (Bakraur), Bihar in Hindi on 27 October 2020, and has been translated.


Q: The government had promised free ration during the lockdown. Were you getting it?

Beneficiary: We have five members in the family. Each of us was being provided with 5 kgs of ration, so our family did receive 25 kgs of ration in total.

Q: Did you receive Rs. 1,000 in your bank account as promised under a government scheme?

Beneficiary: Whenever I go to the bank, I am told that the machine is not functioning right now, and so the passbook cannot be updated. I have also not received any text message on my phone. As of now, I will not be able to tell if I have received the Rs. 1,000.

Q: Are you facing any problems while getting ration via the Public Distribution System?

Beneficiary: The problem is that people are not scared of COVID-19 anymore! They gather in large numbers to collect ration, and there is a tussle to get ration amid the crowd. They don’t listen even if one tries to explain.


More experiences can be found on the dedicated Inside Districts platform.

Also read: Securing ‘Direct’ Welfare in a Pandemic

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