The automatic machines for paying bills are installed at the BESCOM (Bangalore Electric Company) to save money (government) and time (for the consumers). Now the interesting thing is that they have actually employed a person to accept cash and deposit it to the machine. Strange? No ! when I saw him for the first time, I thought the machine was at fault, But this guy was there accepting our cash and feeding it to the machine everytime I went to pay my power bills! Now what’s the need of a machine then??????
In ‘Silicon valley of India’ we have such machines at the railway station too. This one is quite different from the one I have seen at other railway stations (other ones had old Telephone like buttons and was crappy looking). This machine was state of the art, had good displays and would accept 1Re, 5Rs coins to issue platform tickets. Recently I went to pick my wife and her mom (the usage mother in law is a bit harsh for her). Considering the queue at the ticket counter I thought of giving this machine a try. <<Also my last experience at the ticket counter was horrible. The guy at the counter was rude and did not issue a ticket until I gave him change for 3 Rs. He did not accept a 5 Rupee coin!. My wife had to vandalize her purse to get the change.>>
So here I am at the state of the art ticket vending machine. Wait a minute the first one is not working, so I proceeded to the second machine, wow they have machines everywhere I thought. I found this little guy who was protecting the machine with his both hands. People were giving him the money and he in turn put the coins in the slot and gave the ticket to them.
Oh so they have employed one person here too. I thought.
I gave him the coins. He put them in the slot, the machine grumbled and he handed over the ticket to me.
One rupee. He said.
WHAT?. I asked
One rupee sir. He repeated.
That’s when it struck me; he was making money out of it. J I handed over 1 Re to him.
Apparently he is a freelancer.