State Bank of India

State Bank of India is one of the banks in which I will never open an account.  I had an account with them which I closed a few months ago.  You won’t get worse service in any other bank, I think.  At least, I haven’t. 

And yet they have brought out this advertisement.  That they have given 13600 water purifiers to an equal number of schools in India.  I don’t believe the ad at all.  The SBI must be bluffing us for all I know.  Just two days back I was in a branch of SBI, Green Park Extension, Delhi, to deposit an amount in the name of my sister whose account is in a Kerala branch of the bank.  I was told to wait in a particular queue.  I waited rather impatiently for 50 minutes.  The clerk who was dealing with the clients in the queue was too slow even by normal Indian standards, and even by SBI standards.  Finally when my turn came, I was told that outstation deposits will only be accepted in the Mandir –vali gali branch.  The clerk did not even have the courtesy to tell me what all that gibberish meant. I was barely able to make out the words mandir and gali.

I was lucky enough to have lived in Delhi for 11 years to understand the importance of mandir and gali.  I came out of the terrible bank and asked a paan-wala where the mandir-vali gali was.  He was not very sure.  I mentioned the SBI.  He said, “Yes, there’s a branch of SBI there.  But that caters to amounts less than 10,000.”  I wanted to send exactly Rs 10,000. 

Finally I located the mandir-vali gali branch of SBI. It looked worse than a prison.  It was a room of 2m x 1m.  If you don’t believe me, do visit it at Yusuf Sarai, New Delhi, almost opposite to All India Institute of Medical Sciences.  The fellow at the counter was very condescending, even obsequious.  I raised a doubt: “How can I pay money at this counter which looks like …?”  The fellow at the counter said even before I could complete my simile: “Just like you would pay at the bank.  We’ll give you the stamped counterfoil.”

He did give me a stamped counterfoil.   But my problem is: Why does the SBI do such a thing?  Why can’t it make its own branches function properly?  Too many stupid people working in govt offices, as I was told by the Mehrauli branch of SBI a few years ago when I went with a similar complaint? 

Too many stupid people working in govt office.  I think that’s the problem with India. 

You walk into any govt office to find it out.  They are stupid and cunning.  They know how to make money out of you.  Either by swindling you in the form of bribe or by sending you to a counter where the commission will be charged against your account!

That’s India  🙂

That’s State Bank of India.

That’s all the state-run banks of India, as far as my experience goes.


my probelm is this:

why does the SBI spend money on installing water purifiers in schools instead of giving proper service to their clients? 

The Railway of India has decided to roll back the hike in the fares and go for advertising.  Didn’t Laloo, with all his puny but crooked brain, do the same thing and fail miserably?  What we need is not advertisement.  What we need is service, proper service, just the service which you are supposed to give us.  Why can’t the SBI or any govt agency give it?


Simply because the govt is a bunch of fools, criminals, or … you choose.


About matheikal

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37 Responses to State Bank of India

  1. bennyec says:

    This post really touches me. I have had umpteen bad experiences with the state bank of India. If anything you won’t get any better service from the State Bank of India in the near future.I only hope that some people or all people will read this blog and will give India a clean State Bank and better service.

  2. bennyec says:

    This really touches me. I hope all people read this blog. I have had umpteen bitter experiences with the State Bank India..Hope some officials will read this and take up some remedial measures.


    Enjoyed your BAD experience 😀
    haha,,, smiled in between…

    I must tell you my title for this post.
    SAD STATE BANKS( i mean state owned banks )

    why does the SBI spend money on installing water purifiers in schools instead of giving proper service to their clients?
    I read that AD sir, i dont think that as an AUTHENTIC one !

  4. Dear Mr Matheikal, I am sorry that has happened to you. As an employee of the State Bank Group, I do feel ashamed of it. Internally, I will try and send your message to the Chairman of the group.

    That said, I have had worse experiences in the so-called new age private sector banks too. I want to say just one thing at the point, although not as an excuse to your miserable experience, we are going fast down the drain as a nation. I have put up with extremely painful experiences in hospitals, transporters, insurance companies, builders: both public and private, in all these places and yes, even crematoriums.

    • matheikal says:

      Mr Pandey, I’ll be immensely grateful to you if you can indeed madke the SBI staff see some sense. I still have a PPF account with the Mehrauli branch which also deals with the clients as if the clients are slaves. The Manager of that branch told me that most staff were just class 10 pass and couldn’t understand the computers! An amount of Rs 25,000 had just vanished from my account merely because one such computer-illiterate clerk had forgotten to press the enter button of his computer!

      • ARKA DUTTA says:

        Hello Mr. Matheikal, I am an employee of SBI. First of all I am very sorry for the treatment you got or so many other customers are getting because of the callousness of some of our employees.I am not sure how can a Branch refuse to take a certain deposit of Rs.25000/-.I will enquire about this with The Regional Manager concerned.Secondly,even if a person forgets to hit enter in no way the money shoud “vanish” because at the end of the day there will b a cash drawer mismatch of that same amount unless the employee has by some mistake given the money to somebody else. So if you have lost money,do contact higher branch or region officials.Thank You.

      • matheikal says:

        The issue was sorted out. This happened a long time ago as you can see from the date of the blog.
        Welcome to my regular blog:

  5. makpossible says:

    Too many stupid people are running our country sir, not hust offices. Are these banks not updated on netbanking?

  6. enidhi says:

    Agree with your view point. Many corporates need a way to show their CSR

  7. Do understand your concern sir. My take on it is as usual a little diff.

    “why does the SBI spend money on installing water purifiers in schools instead of giving proper service to their clients? ”
    Ans. Because there’s something known as corporate responsibility. Yes, post liberalization it must be called a corporation(technically, at least).

    Now, sir the judicial system is screwed, our politics is widely criminalized, the bureaucracy is snail slow, law enforcement is crappy. The only worthwhile people are either writing or reading such stuff. 😛 Aren’t we getting more pessimistic by the day.

    • matheikal says:

      Sid, the corporate responsibility should be first and foremost to the clients. Of course, I understand the technical problem of having to show in the accounts how “corporate responsibility money” is being spent. I understand what you’re trying to say.

      I enjoyed your comment that the only worthwhile people are either writing or reading stuff. That’s sad and funny. Let me enjoy your laugh 🙂

  8. gayathri says:

    I totally agreee sir! SBI was my first salary account, the first thing I did as soon as my bond got over was to change my bank account..!! They had once debited 15K from my account instead of doing it from someone else’s account.. never noticed it.. and I had to go behind them for my money..!! Finally, the reason they gave me for doing that was, ‘Sorry, it was done by mistake’ Mistake??? you cannot make mistake with someone else’s money! Then their core banking tamasha..!! My account was in Bangalore and I am in Chennai… for anything I have to go to Bangalore… Maybe I mistook the meaning of core banking..

    • matheikal says:

      Honestly, Gayathri, the SBI has an bunch of the oldies appointed way back in the 70s when class 10 pass was the basic qualification required for becoming a clerk, apart from a simple test. Those ‘Babus’ are still there in some branches occupying even good positions by merit of promotion by seniority. Such babus cannot even handle a computer prperly, let alone core banking.

  9. Cynosure says:

    State Bank…Worst Bank… 😉
    I always enjoy reading when someone blames SBI for anything… 😛 😛 😛

    • matheikal says:

      That’s an interesting comment. Because I would simply enjoy writing against the SBI at any time. I have had an association with them from the 70’s.

      • Cynosure says:

        haha…that was rather a more interesting reply… 😛
        kudos to you…you have survived the 40 years of association with SBI… 😛

  10. Raghuram Ekambaram says:

    Matheikal, I know how much I had run between the first and ground floors of SBI, Nehru Place in 1993, merely to open a PPF account! But, whatever your specific compalint is, you can find versions of it everywhere, private or public outfits. I have had bad experiences with both Indian Airlines and Jet, in the matter of wheeling my mother to the taxi stand!

    Long, long time ago, the private bus services on the moffusil routes were shunned in Tamil Nadu in favor of, take this, State service! Things just keep flipping and flopping and the equilibrium continues to be in the middle, in the muddle!


    • matheikal says:

      Raghuram, a very balanced comment, I should say, even by your standards.

      I’m turning increasingly against govt-run systems after a few repeated experiences in such establishments. No, they can’t run a system, simply because they are fools for crooks. That’s my verdict after experiences.

      Will private agents be better? Maybe, at least because they are concerned about profits.
      And profits will take us down the drain 🙂

      Where do we go now? I really don’t know.

  11. Agreed SBI gives bad service. But the new banks too do the same. So long as you credit lots of money into their bank they are happy!. Else face the lethargy.

    The actual way out is to complain, and complain. There are mechanisms in place. Please go ahead write letters to all and sundry. Let them take note of bad service at every instance. that will wake them up from their deep slumber.

    • matheikal says:

      Jayalakshmi, my salary account is with a public sector bank. I’m terribly disappointed with their services. They too suffer from the same problem of having too many people who don’t know how to operate the computer. I lost Rs 450 a few months back as fine since the computer operator of the bank had not done his job. I did not complain simply because I have to face the same bastards again and again. I chose to lose the amount.

      I opted for an account with ICICI. The account is about seven years old and I have absolutely no complaint up to now. I closed my SBI credit card from the time I found ICICI’s service including their credit card far more trustworthy than SBI’s. That’s my experience.

  12. Aditi says:

    Matheikal, unlike your experience, I am one great loyalist of State Bank…hahahah, may be because being part of the same inefficient system, we understand each other and are in perfect synch….I have had my salary account in the same branch of SBI for three decades, despite change of Bhavans and literally seen it grow…from just four desks, it now occupies almost the entire ground floor of a Government Bhavan. I suppose people manning the desks make all the difference – the human touch. Contrary to your experience, I always found the (ever changing) staff at my Branch very cooperative and helpful. These days I rarely visit the Branch, but whenever I have gone, I found them helpful.

    These days I am totally into online banking through SBI ( can hear you groan…hahahha) for all my banking needs.

    • matheikal says:

      Aditi, first of all, thanks for voicing your comment after a long time.

      Probably, the branch matters. A branch dealing with VIPs will definitely be far more efficient than an ordinary people’s branch 🙂

      I wonder whether the online banking of SBI is efficient. I use ICICI’s online services and am happy with their efficiency and security systems.

  13. R Sai Srinivas says:

    I request all here in this blog to just in walk in to the City Union Bank Ltd. After that you will feel that CUB is the only bank in India, that other public and private banks dont exist. CUB offers world class service with 200% customer oreintation. Higher Service. Lowest Charges. Abundant Courtesy. Just visit and email me. Iam not lying . Iam a SB a/c holder.

  14. Suraj says:

    Have you ever tried contacting the SBI call centre. In 10 years of phone banking experiences, this is the first time, I have encountered an engage tone for the whole of the day. They have a single land line number which may be like a local EPABX with may be 10 operators, that gets exhausted with a few callers. The largest Indian bank has just one local number in Bangalore and you need to dial an STD call for that. They also have a 1800 number but it does not work when trying from a mobile.

  15. Suraj says:

    What is the use.. the best way is to pull out one’s money and move away from these banks. Its not as if these are ultra-safe banks either. PSU banks have the highest NPA ratios and are the most likely to go bust

  16. lalit sharma says:

    It happens only in India!!!

  17. Gurjar Mehta says:

    How can I know that in individual state has how many branch & how many employee is from that state in ratio of total employee employed in that state.

  18. Anshita says:

    Being a staff of SBI I think that these people don’t keep their staff happy….the staff is treated like slaves…they have to beg for their rights!!!the HR policies are pathetic …..whenever staff needs help from its management ,the egoistic BABOOS just make you come again and again for small petty things…..if u want a staff loan,these people will make u cry….will make u beg….I repeat literally BEG !!!and they don’t care if a lady is pregnant n wants a transfer to nearby branch…they will say that this is very common and can’t be considered as a genuine reason!!!imagine if these people behave. Like this!! Then how can the staff cooperate with the clients yaar ……and I agree with the views and seriously want to leave this job ….

  19. R Sai Srinivas says:

    It is quite odd that in this cyber age, you are going to branch for depositing cash to your sister’s a/c. You can do the same thru net banking by sitting at home. City Union Bank is the best bank in India.

  20. nimesh mohan says:

    i agree with you all. they are the biggest mother fuckers, thinking they own the banking system in india. i went to open an account in salt lake SBI in sector 3 HA block. they made me run for weeks and after submitting all documents one son of a bitch who is not even qualified to wash my house footsteps, one bitch Abhinandahan, says he is not satisfied just because he doesn’t know the system of renewal of personal documents and how addresses may change. i have been trying to log a complaint against that bitch. but in vain. i will break his bones . i swear to god. .

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