E-dirhams cards turning up blank

The Department of Naturalisation and Residency in Abu Dhabi is witnessing a perplexing phenomenon. Amounts are 'vanishing' from electronic dirham cards, issued by the bank operating within the department.


Allegations of fraudulent practices in using e-cards at the Department of Naturalisation and Residency have surfaced, with residents complaining that their 'loaded' e-cards are turning dud when submitted at some counters. An official source at the Department of Naturalisation and Residency, however, said the department's meticulous security measures were being taken to ensure the rights of people.


The arguments in the line of an oversight or omission, as pointed out by some sources at the Department wears thin in the face of the candid admission by the bank employees that such incidents are rampant these days. A case in point is that of Yesu Babu, a private company employee who had to pay Dh300 twice  last Monday for his son's visa as his first e-card showed zero amount when swiped.


“I submitted my documents at counter number nine and the staff took all my papers along with the e-card. After examining my documents, he swiped the card and told me there is no money. I showed him the receipt but he swiped again and insisted that there is no cash,” Babu told Khaleej Times.


Babu said that when he went back to the bank that issued the e-card, they maintained that they have no clue where the money has vanished. “I went to an officer, but they ignored my complaint. I had no choice but to buy another e-card, and luckily, it worked the second time,” noted an irate Babu.


Babu maintained that there was some hanky-panky and that somebody is cheating. Confirming his line of thought was a source at the bank, who stated that they are receiving similar complaints every day. When this reporter, posing as a relative of a cheated customer, approached the bank, they said is has become a regular phenomenon.


“There are complaints every day and we don't understand what is wrong. When I give the receipt, I am hundred per cent sure that there is Dh300 inside the card. And then the money disappears,” noted the source. When asked whether there was some foul play going on, the source put it this way. “Sometimes. You check with the computer section please. They would know.”


Immigration official's reply


By Adel Arafa