The very hurt locker
It is wiser to be safe than sorry, so hang on to your valuables and stash them under your mattress.
If you have been banking on banks to keep your valued possessions safe, you might want to think again. As has been reported, a certain liquid detergent producer-seller from Raipur, Chhattisgarh had decided to stash away Rs 1.5 lakh in a bank locker there, only to find four months later that the cash had been devoured by termites. The bank, for its part, has refused to recompense the affected person for the losses suffered, trying to shift the blame on to the old newspapers that were used to wrap the wads of currency notes.
This might very well set a precedent for pests and pestilence of other kinds to affect what we hold dear. We might as well get into the habit of keeping a close watch on the skies, lest we are invaded by a Biblical swarm of locusts that apart from destroying crops, also make off with all the latest digital devices that we hold closer to our chest than any other. Having learnt a lesson from the Raipur incident and not willing to be caught in a similar bind where we lose our hard-earned (or sometimes pilfered) savings, we would also be well-advised to not ignore the danger posed by those that are puny but lethal, lest a particularly nasty spider weaves a web powerful enough to gather and hike off with the family silver we had so cherished having.
And since we will have to assume responsibility as the sole custodian of our fortunes, banks and similar institutions can merrily shut shop. Tried and tested ways of keeping valuables secure — secret chests, those pots buried in the backyard or even the old sock that can stash away the jewellery that we have — might all be back in business. Getting used to sleeping on a mattress stuffed with valuables is a handy skill that will ensure that you do not lose sleep worrying about the dietary habits of termites. And if banks can absolve themselves of the responsibility associated with perforated and damaged notes, there is no reason to mistrust small kids when they next say that the dog ate their homework.