But seriously, ATMs are bringing about a revolution in society. Consider this – at ICICI’s air conditioned fancy office with English speaking help desk officers, the lower class people do not get equal treatment if at all they walk in. At an ATM, it doesn’t matter whether you are a rag picker or one who doesn’t understand English, you get the exact same treatment that is given to the saab who lands in a Merc. You are a customer and you get the same respect regardless of what you wear or talk.
As I said, there is a big revolution happening out here in how people define ATMs. For some it is a vault where they can deposit their daily wages at the end of the day. No more ‘alcoholic-husband-takes-all-the-savings’ scenario. And people are taking note — there is a move (and research) in Karnataka to pack ATMs with soiled notes, so that villagers are more comfortable and identify with it. There are studies going on about how to reduce the procedure for depositing money, so that people have to write the least number of words.
People take technology for granted, but for some it is giving a new life altogether.