RAWALPINDI: The manual token system still in vogue at the National Saving Centre (NSC) in Muslim Town area, in this era of modern technology, has made routine banking a herculean task for senior citizens.
Murtaza Abbasi, 65, has to reach the centre at 6 am to get his name registered and then get a token issued by the security guards deputed there after 8 am for every single banking transaction he wishes to do.
“The humiliation does not end here. It takes one more hour as the NSC opens at 9 am, whereas the concerned official takes another half hour to enter the tokens in an outdated ledger and feed them in the computer system for the withdrawal or deposit of cash,” he told APP on Wednesday while waiting for the centre to open.
He lamented that after a three-hour hectic exercise one is just able to manage to enter the premises of the saving centre.
A widow, Niyaz Fatima, who had come all the way from Sihala to withdraw her husband’s pension, said that she was a 70-year old heart patient who has to go through an exhausting day to run the affairs of life every month.
Hussain Shah, a 75-year government pensioner said that complaints had been lodged for adopting automated e-ticketing many times. “It looks the NSC’s administration wants to carry this system as a legacy asset for the coming generations,” he remarked.
“The activity is so complex that a group of five persons is called to deal with it at the same time, consuming even more time and creating mix-ups,” he added.
He said that around 200 people visit the centre daily but it only has a seating capacity for 40 persons at a time and the elderly have no choice but to stand, waiting for hours.
An NSC official at the facility said that they were aware of the problems being faced by the senior citizens and are gradually improving their quality of service.
He also said that the condition was more pathetic before, but now the clients are provided with forty comfortable seats to wait for their turn. “The demand for an e-token system had been forwarded to the high-ups and steps are under consideration to resolve these issues,” he added.