'Alive & kicking' pensioner declared dead

In what appears to be a comedy of errors, a pensioner who submitted his life certificate to the bank in October last year and drew his pension till January 2013, was suddenly declared dead in February and his account closed.

Gaya-based 74-year-old Kameshwar Prasad got the shock of his life when barely five months after he submitted his life certificate (the document which every pensioner has to give as proof of being alive), he was shown in the records of the State Bank of India, Gaya, as “dead” with remarks on his savings account bank passbook “the deceased estate set stop”.

The gaffe came to light when Prasad last week went to the bank to withdraw his pension amount received for the month of February.

 On being told that he had been declared dead in the bank books, Prasad confronted the authorities that his photograph was pasted on his passbook and he was standing before them as “alive and kicking.”

But when all sorts of persuasion and arguments fell on deaf ears, Prasad met branch manager Rupa Ishwar and submitted a petition requesting the latter to restart the pension after declaring him alive.

“My entire family depends on my pension,” he asserted, while ruing the goof up by bank officials.

The branch manager, who said that it could be a ‘human error’ on part of the bank staff, assured Prasad to rectify the mistake soon.

Prasad, who retired from Jaiprakash Hospital where he worked as ward attendant, actually lost his son Vinod Gautam in January this year. In February, he submitted a petition to the bank asking for closure of his son’s account due to his untimely demise.

But the bank, instead of closing Gautam’s savings account, closed Prasad’s account and stopped his pension too after declaring the septuagenarian “dead”.
Additional general manager of the SBI, Vinod Kumar assured that the gaffe would be set aright at the earliest.

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