nareshovの日記

(TL note: nareshov's diary)

Archive for the ‘Personal’ Category

Updates as of 17th July, ’14

leave a comment »

A lot’s happened since I last posted here. Job switches, travel, treks, books, cycle rides, engagement, accidents, and so on. I’ve been uploading quite a few photographs in my Flickr account and keep my Goodreads profile more or less up-to-date.

It must’ve been an exasperating (disenchanted rather) experience with banks that prompts me to post something about them today.

I’ve held more than two savings accounts across banks and thought this must a good time (IT-R season) to cut down on some of the least recently used bank accounts. I started with YES bank: emailed them a couple of days ago asking for a quick outline of the procedure, they responded within 24 hours in email (rather than calling me up out of the blue — which is a good thing) and all they wanted from me was to fill up a closure request form at any branch and destroy the ATM card and cheques.

Visited the branch at JP Nagar (6th phase?) and saw a small branch with four people in there. There were no queues (small banks and branches are neat aren’t they?) and I was quickly and courteously attended to. They were satisfied with my reason for closure (too many accounts) and didn’t bother me anymore about it. Overall quite good experience. The only negative points were the account closure charges: nearly 112 rupees. And they took a few minutes to print out the closure form which they didn’t have handy. I guess they’re entitled to that for the low operations in their personal banking branches and for offering a fabulous interest rate of at least 6% (depending on the type) in their savings accounts. The remaining balance would be NEFT’ed to my HDFC account whose details were filled along while submitting the closure request.

Next up was ICICI bank. This is an account I’ve been holding since 2011 starting off at the Malad branch in Mumbai which I later transferred to the Koramangala branch a year later. I’ve also held credit cards with them and I kind of still have a soft spot for this bank (their phone customer service is usually excellent, even late at night). I’ve raised a closure request for the credit cards which I haven’t been using for a while now over phone banking and it seems to be progressing at its own pace (about a day old). What surprised me was, I think, the home branch portability of this bank. I don’t recall setting the JP Nagar 6th phase branch as my home branch and it appears that they’ve done this by themselves based on proximity to my residential address at JP Nagar 7th phase. That was pretty cool I thought. Onto the actual branch visit, the customer relations lady seemed a little irritable and was mostly on the phone while I sat there patiently waiting for her attention. Their closure request form had options to en-cash the balance out through NEFT, DD or cash withdrawal from the teller. The relations lady flat out refused to do the NEFT stating no reason. She kept pushing me to use the ATM or take a DD. I didn’t have my latest ATM card with me (old account, don’t know where it is) and I don’t like the idea of running around to banks with a DD in hand. Finally she budged and let me withdraw cash from a manned teller. It’s a little disappointing given the “privileged” banking customer status and all. NEFT would’ve been ideal. Now I have quarter’s supply of cash in my wallet.

HDFC bank: I’m not closing any account right now; to the contrary, I purchased a FOREX card through the netbanking which got delivered to me today. The person (3rd party agent on behalf of HDFC) who delivered the card asked me to activate the card through phone banking. I called up the number listed in the kit and IVR’d my way through to an intermediary who was going to forward me to the correct department. This intermediary, like so many intermediaries in the past at various occasions in my HDFC phone banking experience, had some “phone-only” offer to sell me. It was some kind of “savings plan” whose details I can’t remember or lookup, because, as usual, they wouldn’t send me a PDF brochure or a link to my registered email address when I ask them. They’d offer to send me some product manager to discuss the product and its terms, but all I want is a brochure to read at my own leisure and decide whether I want to pursue this or not. It has happened in the past with other products I was being sold such as insurance.

I’ve been using a DBS account since mid Feb this year and I quite like the interface and OTP format it uses. The debit card has offers relevant to me. A good selling point was its ability to allow me to add an external NEFT beneficiary and transfer money without having to wait. (HDFC and SBI has minimum wait times of 12 hours if I recall correctly). It’s been a good experience so far. I wish it had more options in its netbanking such as the ability to download historical statements in PDF (not just a bare-bones CSV that it currently provides). And perhaps more services such as prepaid cards and so on.

The quest for a good savings bank account with secure but not-irritating netbanking, reasonable service charges (100 rupees to close an account (YES) or drop a cheque at a non-home branch (HDFC)? Silliness) is still open. And I wish more workplaces offered a choice with salary deposits like my current company does (that is how I ended up with DBS – my own experimental choice).

Written by Naresh

July 17, 2014 at 5:27 pm

Updates as of 3rd June, ’10

leave a comment »

It’s been a really long time since I last blogged. My attempts at living a moderately disciplined and occupied life has been quite a success. That would mean a major change in lifestyle from my college days.

Recent updates include:

a. moving to a newer apartment near Powai lake in Mumbai.

Moved in with my former (first one at college) roomie – Koushik Mandal(!) and his department-mate (and my batch-mate from Hall3), Sidhant Dash. They’re cool folks (barring Mandal’s mandalism at times). Each of us were living with other non-IITK, non-Y4 batch folks earlier – this was the primary criterion that prompted the move for each of us.

b. managing to read fiction.

I read ‘Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman’ – a collection of short stories and ‘Hard-boiled Wonderland and The End of The World’ (novel) by Haruki Murakami. He’s a Japanese author and I read the English translations of these. The last fiction I read before these was Agatha Christie’s “The Murder of Dr. Roger Ackroyd” four years ago! I’ve been a passive consumer all along – anime, movies, TV dramas, you know, the kind that don’t require the mental weightlifting as in the case of active media – books.

In a recent Wired article, two abilities were distinguished – “The ability to scan and browse is as important as the ability to read deeply and think attentively.” Being the kind of person who’d been chasing after Google search results until recently, I might’ve adopted the former as my dominant mode of thought and maybe reading “larger” material might improve the situation. Not that this is primary motivation to read- just that it’s a welcome throw-in that comes with it, I guess. Looking forward to another Murakami piece – ‘Kafka on the shore’.

c. weekly anime-sessions.

Vishnu, Karan and I meet up on weekends trying to catch up with anime. I haven’t been able to watch anime like I used to in the past year. But these weekly sessions are fun.

We’ve been watching ‘Aura Battler: Dunbine’, an 80’s show, it’s about 49 episodes long and I think we’ve reached 38 episodes through!

The past 3 weekends I’ve been introduced to the new ‘Dr. Who’ show and I’ve found it a really good British sci-fi show so far. I’m usually wary of insanely long shows – long as in several seasons over the years. For one, I fear getting really sucked into it and wanting to watch it all or read it all. The same reason that keeps one away from, say, ‘One Piece’. Maybe I should stop being such a “perfectionist”.

Written by Naresh

June 3, 2010 at 4:24 am

Posted in Anime, Books, Personal

Tagged with , , ,

Updates as of 16th Mar. ’10

with 2 comments

It’s been a while since I’ve posted an “updates” post so it looks like I’m going to have to recap quite a bit.

First off, today marks two months of my stay at Mumbai. It’s been an interesting experience in as far as the passage of time is concerned. I feel a lot busier than I used to and I think that’s a good thing. I’m beginning to make fuller use of the day unlike my (extremely) lazy days at college a year ago. Interestingly, today also marks the Hindu new year in the Western and Southern parts of the country (unsure about the rest).

And more interestingly, yesterday the GATE results were announced. Although I had registered for it, I didn’t appear for the exam. I was convinced I was way under-prepared and I took off to Mumbai. My juniors at IITK got their scores: Shashank did surprisingly well (99+ percentile), then it was Praneeth followed by Surya. Going by the numbers they’ve scored and the first-hand report on the sort of importance Theory of Computation holds in this paper, I’m slightly better informed now (would’ve been more better informed if I actually wrote the exam!) and this gives me more direction towards what to prepare for by next year’s GATE.

Rachit, a former wingmate of mine, flew from his Uni in Paris to Mumbai on 1st of March for a short detour homeward and then onto his new job at Paris. We had a reunion of sorts: Mandal (puts up at Kandivali), Kanodia (somewhere in Navi Mumbai, Ghansoli IIRC), Saurabh(!), Rachit and I. We had a good time and went down to Churchgate for what would be my first encounter with “Bademiya” – a smallish outdoor eatery specialising in primarily non-vegetarian food. It was busy. Really busy. But good too.

And last weekend was a weekend out with Mitesh (who so gracefully came all the way from Pune), Rachit (who had just returned from visiting his home), Saurabh, Mandal and I. We met on Friday, had a good night and the morning Rachit left to fly back to Paris. We had a good time on Saturday – watched “Alice in Wonderland” in IMAX! – Followed by another visit to Bademiya (Mitesh’s first visit).

I quite liked the movie. Before the actual movie started, a bunch of trailers (2D and 3D) were shown and boy is the IMAX 3D experience going to get big or what. Must thank Avatar to kick things off in India. Really. I liked the white queen in the movie. The movie was so sparkly and all, could be thought of as a *cough*acid trip*cough* (not that I know). It’s a must watch, really. It’s amazing how novel experiences can really brighten up our minds, raising our bars of satisfaction every time we confront something new.

Written by Naresh

March 16, 2010 at 8:26 am

Posted in Personal

Tagged with , , , ,