India is slowly coming to terms with the government`s move to demonetize its 500 and 1000 rupee notes in a massive effort to curb black money, corruption and terrorism. While this move has been hailed by many as a rightful masterstroke by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the rush for new currency notes and smaller denominations has been creating a near-chaos on the streets.
Long queues at banks and ATM`s across India is a familiar sight. Bankers are stressed while the serpentine queues outside are distressed. When someone thought that it was a nightmare on Indian streets. This weekend the scenario was changing for the better.
Thousands of volunteers of Sri Sri Ravi Shankar`s Art of Living have spread into the streets of India to comfort, care and help people at banks and ATM`s.
— Sri Sri Ravi Shankar (@SriSri) November 13, 2016
“A wave of goodness has gone viral” said Anjesh Thakur as she was busy distributing water and biscuits to a five hundred people long queue outside a bank in rural Bangalore.
Similar moments of volunteerism are happening in various parts of India where selfless and inspired people are helping and cheering-up those waiting for their turn to touch, feel and use the new currency notes.
In Kerala, a massive wave of inspired volunteerism sparked by Art of Living volunteers is galloping at a rapid pace. The towns of Kasargod, Kozhikode, Pathanamthita, Thrissur, Trivandrum are seeing people being helped in many ways – filling out forms, music for the bored and reassurances for the panicking citizens.
The famous Kerala banana chips and tea is also making its rounds to anxious people waiting in the scorching sun. Senior citizens and the physically challenged are being given much attention as volunteers chat with them and take them ahead of the line to special counters set up by the banks.
A bank manager in Nasik, Maharashtra is reported to have profusely thanked Art of Living volunteers saying “Without your support we would have landed in hospital”. Punjab, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar are also seeing the goodness go viral.
Banks around the country are working round-the-clock to ensure that people receive smaller denominations and the new currency notes. A tall order indeed for a nation of a billion people with 2,00,000 ATM`s and several thousand bank branches.
Care for You. Care for Queue. This seems to be the password of goodness that`s gone viral this weekend. Inspiring all those volunteers sweating it out. For India.