Candy cents

5 kaasu thirudina thappa? Thappu ille
5 thadave 5 kaasu thirudina thappa? Thappu mathiri thaan theriyuthu
5 paer 5 thadave 5 kaasu thirudine thappa? thappu thaan…

– This dialogue from Anniyan movie could have been a object of ridicule for many serials and commercials. But in reality…

Indian Government has been minting coins with various denominations and over a period of time, some of the denominations have been pulled back. But in recent times, though the government has not stopped neither minting or withdrawing certain denomination, some coins are not accepted by shop keepers and vendors. Lets talk about the 50 paise scarcity. 50 paise is not a very weak denomination and one can still buy a lot of stuff for just 50 paise. Though the government is still minting 10 paise and 25 paise, lets not talk about it as you can rarely put them to use (other than start collecting them). A few months back I got to know from a news channel that coins like 1 rupee or 50 Paise are being used to manufacture razor blades and then smuggled out of the country to be sold at a higher value. This is illegal and equally illegal is vendors not accepting denominations of valid coins. But I really don’t care when they refuse to accept it. It really puts me off, when they refuse to give proper balance back to the customers.

Public Bus conductors are the No 1 accused culprits when it comes to not giving back proper change. These guys just refuse to give 50 paise back and a simple calculation will tell that they will be making a profit of Rs 200 to Rs 300 per day, by just not giving back 50 paise. A very easy way to swindle around 30k per month without actually cheating the government.

candies for 50 paiseAlso now the vendors have found a better way to give change (substitute) for 50 paise. Candies… From petty shop owners to chain departmental store, everywhere you can find people giving you 50 paise worth (MRP) candies to customers. I find it very irritating coz I am not a kid to be offered with candies. To be forcefully offered something a customer doesn’t want and charge him for that should also be made illegal. Will they accept candies from customers instead of money? If i offer 20 mint-o-fresh candies to a shopowner and demand stuff for Rs 10, will he accept it? Or when he has to give me 50 paise, if I give him a candy, will he give me 1 rupee? (I got into a huge argument with Reliance Fresh cashier when I tried this today morning…finally got my 50 paise…) The actual wholesale price of these candies would be 10-15 paise and they are given as substitute for 50 paise. A 35 paise margin in a shop like Reliance or Spencers would also bring in unaccounted / untaxed Rs 400-500 in to cash box per day.

50 paise on its own is not a big deal to waste one’s day with your bus conductor or store keeper. But I would prefer to give a couple of 50 paise coins to beggars rather than to loose it with people who try to swindle it and be a victim of this un-noticed large scale scandal.

As a precaution, I prefer to swipe my plastic in shops and also carry a couple of 50 paise coins and 1 50 paise candy in my wallet. Shopkeepers be ready for a brawl when I step in…