Man strips to get PF money
VADODARA: A 41-year-old man, tired of running from pillar to post for his provident fund (PF), took Gandhigiri to new heights on Wednesday morning. Just like a character in Lage Raho Munnabhai, he stripped in the PF office at Akota to register his protest. The ploy worked. Senior officials have also suspended a clerk for delays and promised him the money before April 15.
Indravadan Patel had been coming from Atali village to the PF office since January for his Rs 50,000. But officials would ask him to come back another day with one document or another. Patel claimed that an employee had asked for Rs 1,000 bribe which he paid after borrowing from a friend.
“When I came to submit a form to redeem the money on January 1, I was asked to submit birth certificates of my sons. I submitted them on January 3 and was assured that I would get the money on February 2,” said an agitated Patel, who worked for nine years in a private firm in Karjan that shut down last year.
“On February 22, my application was rejected. It was sent back to the company which revised the form and returned it to the PF office again. I was then asked to submit my wife’s birth certificate, bank statement and experience certificate.” On Tuesday evening he was told to come on April 10. By then, Patel had lost his patience. He came to the PF office on Wednesday and stripped down to his underwear.
“I had to sell my wife’s jewellery and borrow money to sustain my family. These people have no heart.” He admitted that he was not only inspired by Munnabhai but also Pooja Chauhan, the woman in Rajkot who had stripped and walked the streets in Rajkot to protest.
The police have booked him for indecency in public but Patel has filed a police complaint against PF officials for mental harassment.
Regional PF officer MP Sinha immediately suspended clerk Nagendra Kumar. “His claim is due for settlement before April 15. I will ensure that he gets his dues,” he said.