Even a ten rupee bill can guard you September 24, 2011Posted by aglakadam in Jara hut ke, Life and all.
I never preserved purchase bills till this incident happened with me. A few years back I was in Mumbai and moving from Bandra to Borivali in a taxi. Somewhere on the way, mid afternoon, our taxi was subjected to police checking. Probably there was some crime suspect likely to pass the way and as such each one commuting on that particular road was stopped at the check post. Everyone was asked to produce a proof of identity and whereabouts. It was a tough interrogation. I was asked about the reason why I was in Mumbai and from where I was coming and where I intended to go. Fortunately I had saved the prepaid taxi bill procured early morning and also the hotel bill where I had my meals. These two slips helped me to prove my innocence and we were allowed to go ahead on our way. Many of us who were not able to prove themselves were asked to stay back! (what happened next to them is not known to me, anyway).
I learned a very important lesson to preserve the bill till we reach home. Most of us when we go to a mall or railway station or a hospital, invariably we park the vehicle in the designated parking yard. I have seen people throwing away the parking bill, the moment they cross across the parking barrier. To all such people I suggest “pl do not consider the ten rupees parking bill as scrap, this can be of great help someday for you.” Yet another phenomenon I have come across is that the bill collector at the parking yard is keen to collect back the parking bill from us at the exit gate. The only intention is to reuse and misappropriate. Friends please beware of such miscreants, never give away your bill to potential misuser’s. This is like mineral water bottle, please crush after use and ensure no misuse in future.
Though bills are ephemeral still they provide a lot of education to us. Recently I had breakfast on a highway motel. After the breakfast I was given a memo kind of a shabby sheet with the bill amount scribbled on it. When I asked the billing counter in-charge to give me a proper bill he immediately replied “Sir, what amount of bill do you need?. Surprised and unhappy at this comment, I quizzed him : “What do you mean by what amount?” Whatever amount I am supposed to pay, please provide me a bill for the same amount. The person across the counter apologized, “Sir, rarely I come across people like you, mostly I am asked for a pukka (proper) bill only when someone has to misappropriate and make a claim somewhere!”
Friends I think people in general need to be more alert and better sensitive about bills. A friend shared with me that in a big town when he went to a restaurant to have meals with his family he learned a new lesson. While ordering the food he was cautious about the figures mentioned on the right hand side in front of the dishes in the menu card. However after the meals when the waiter served the bill there was at least 20% deviation in the amount charged vis-à-vis the price mentioned in the menu card! When queried about this to the hotel management they informed that the new menu card was under print and in some fine print somewhere on the menu card it was mentioned about the pro rata changes in the item rates. Not confirming your bills with the services / goods received can be injurious to your budget.
I sometimes see people extremely careless about their purchases. A laundry owner cry’s his woes, “Most of the affluent customers tend to miss out on their bills when they come to collect their belongings!” We have created a special indemnity clause for all such forgetful customers. After the burglary one gentleman was not able to get insurance benefit only because he did not have sufficient documentation required to support his claim. Raja, an employee with an insurance company, bought a computer from a local vendor but did not preserve the invoice. After a few months when he approached the service center for after sales service, he was refused by the service company because he could not produce the proof of purchase!
I share an anecdote here. “Two friends from Delhi once went to London for an excursion. They were moving around in a rented car on city roads. While at the air station they paid their bill for the fuel and got the ‘money paid slip’ in return. As they moved out of the fuel pump the bill was thrown out of the window by one of them. To their surprise they were immediately followed & intercepted by the traffic police and fined for loitering the streets! (Something we can never imagine in our part of the country!). What happens next was a sure setback for the London police. The car riders paid their fine to the police and in return the police exchanged a bill for the fine amount. As they say old habits die hard, they moved ahead and the penalty bill was tossed out of the window again!
Lessons for Excellence :
- Big lessons are hidden in small incidents; we should have an eye to grab those.
- Bills are important, not just from registering your expenditure in the profit and loss statements but also to make your life easy.
- Never temper with your bills, preserve them for some time period at least.
- Always ask for a bill even against a small purchase, you deserve it.
- Always check your bills for authenticity.
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