Thank You For Your Generous Support; Please Also Fill Out Our Survey on Rentals
Once again, a generous donor (who wishes to remain anonymous) donations to Moneylife and we are so deeply touched by your generous response over the past week. This campaign, which will match donations of upto Rs3000 per donor, is on for another few weeks.
Your support helps us continue to work at a fairer and more equitable system for savers and investors – the challenge is enormous since policy makers and regulators only engage with intermediaries and never those who bear the brunt of their actions and failures. In the last week we saw the bankruptcy 'resolution' of DHFL where people have lost money in all three investments – equity (fully extinguished and got nothing), Fixed Deposits (unsecured and received a pittance), secured and unsecured Non Convertible Debentures (which got a little more).
The acquirer, as our eminent columnist Mr Ranganathan has explained, will walk away with a bounty. Moneylife has been covering these issues relentlessly since December 2018 (when there was a good chance of selling shares or recovering money), so I find the extraordinary lack of financial literacy and awareness among people especially disturbing; how easily we seem to trust motivated sellers (especially banks) to invest money or buy insurance. DHFL brings home to us the enormity of the challenge and how much more needs to be done for people like us… the privileged class, which has so little access to redress. Think about it!
Your donations are valuable and important, but I would also urge you to make the effort to spread the word about what we do. Encourage people to become members, watch our videos. I honestly believe that two hours on our "How to be Safe & Smart with your money" series of videos, will help avoid so many investment traps that people fall into!
I am sure many of you have already attended the excellent new series – Conversations on RTI with Shailesh Gandhi. We are excited to announce the next two conversations. On 12th October, #RTIDiwas, Mr Gandhi will be in conversation with the extraordinary crusader Anna Hazare (registration link), who has an been one of the original campaigners for Right to Information and has done legendary work Maharashtra and at Ralegaon Siddhi – I would urge people outside Maharashtra to tune in, since they know so little about his work.
On 27th October, we have Anjali Bharadwaj, activist and founding member of Satark Nagrik Sangathan whose brave and formidable body of work have empowered the underprivileged and relentlessly exposed the government.
If you have missed the previous conversations, they are superbly insightful and you can catch up with them here: with Ms Aruna Roy, founder of the National Campaign for People's Right to Information, Mr Wajahat Habibullah, the first Chief Information Commissioner, former CIC Prof (Dr) Sridhar Acharyulu and recently with Shri Yogendra Yadav, National President, Swaraj India. Over the coming months, we will be announcing more eminent individuals who shall discuss different aspects of the RTI Act with Shailesh Gandhi. We also look forward to your suggestions on which RTI stalwarts you would like to hear from next! We would be happy to reach out to them.
Survey on Rental Housing in India
Our in-depth study this year is on various aspects of rental housing in India. The study is important since safe and easy rentals are important to young Indians who want and need the flexibility to work anywhere in India. Our systems are usually slow to adapt and your help in filling out this survey will help us to understand and represent the hurdles faced by all stakeholders, but especially tenants more effectively. Please do take the survey especially if you are a tenant or have been one in the past, or have leased out your premises. It will also be helpful if you share the survey link on your WhatsApp groups so that we have diverse feedback.
'RTI Advice' App
Our 'RTI Advice' app on Android and iOS platforms allows novice and veteran users of the Right to Information Act to connect and benefit from expert advice on RTI or the Act itself. The app is language neutral and allows you to get answers on text, or video format and also attach documents. Since its launch, senior RTI activists including former commissioners have generously answered over 800 questions on the app making it an excellent repository of RTI information. Do use the app and help others benefit from this important tool.
Join Moneylife Foundation
Do encourage your network to learn and benefit from Moneylife Foundation's free Membership and our helplines by sharing this message.
Our counseling sessions on various issues remain online Legal & Credit Helplines until full normalcy is restored, we also have Zoom counseling meetings for members when necessary. If you have a query on housing society, insurance, banking, credit or any other issue, please do become a member of Moneylife Foundation and take advantage of the knowledge imparted by our experts who guide through our helplines.
In the coming months, we have planned for many new RTI series' sessions with Mr Gandhi and other interesting guests. Some of the new sessions in October are listed below. Do take note and register for your spot!
Tuesday 12 October, 2021 at 6:15pm
Former Shri Anna Hazare, a social activist, whose work on anti-corruption and pro-transparency stance is widely lauded, will be joining Mr Gandhi on the eve of 'RTI Diwas', for a discussion on RTI as a means to combat corruption through pro-active disclosure or information. Register Now
Wednesday 27 October, 2021 at 6:15pm
Ms Anjali Bhardwaj, activist and founding member of Satark Nagrik Sangathan will be joining Mr Gandhi for a discussion on the power of citizen activism and the RTI Act. Register Now
If you do not get the opportunity to join the session on Zoom, you can still catch the session live on our YouTube and Facebook channels. Allow me to also remind you that you can always catch up on our past financial literacy programmes on our YouTube channel as well.
Do sign up for a free membership to receive information about our activities and initiatives. As always, we look forward to your active feedback on issues that you would like us to discuss, and we will do our best to make it happen. Please do write to us at [email protected]
Programmes in September
This month we had the pleasure of hosting three eminent individuals in the field of transparency and RTI, in our new series 'Conversations on RTI with Shailesh Gandhi'. Staring with former Chief Information Commissioner Mr Wajahat Habibullah, we had an interesting session discussing the progress of the RTI Act in the years since its enactment. You can read more about this session here and also watch a video recording on our YouTube channel here.
Our second session was with former Central Information Commissioner (CIC) Prof (Dr) Sridhar Acharyulu who spoke with Mr Gandhi on the misuse and misinterpretation of exemptions under the RTI Act. The session was attended by members and activists alike, with many being keen to hear perspectives of two former CICs. In case you missed watching it live, you can still watch a video recording on our YouTube channel here and read more about in here.
Our third session this month was with Shri Yogendra Yadav, National President, Swaraj India who had a conversation with Mr Gandhi on topics of transparency and democracy, and how the RTI Act play an important role in efficient promotion of both. You can watch a video recording of this session here and also read more about it here. All our these sessions have been hosted on Zoom and live streamed on our YouTube and Facebook channels. Do subscribe to those to remain updated on new videos.
Moneylife TV & Helplines
With the outbreak of Covid, our physical events and daily clinics for this month continue to remain suspended for the safety and benefit of all those involved. However, in this lockdown period you can still take advantage of our numerous videos of past seminars and workshops which are always available on our YouTube Channel – Moneylife TV and Moneylife News Bites.
Although counselling on various issues from our experts is not possible in-person, you are welcome to email on [email protected] with your details. We shall forward your mail to the expert for guidance and do our best to get your query resolved.
Also, Moneylife Foundation is now on Telegram and Instagram, so do follow us on these channels to stay updated on our activities and events.
Founder-Trustee, Moneylife Foundation
Trustees: TS Krishnamurthy, Walter Vieira, Sucheta Dalal, Debashis Basu.
Moneylife Foundation is registered with the Charity Commissioner of Mumbai, is an Affiliate member of OECD's International Network on Financial Education, is a Supporter Member of Consumers International, Development Partner of Advocates for International Development (A4ID), and is a winner of the 10th MR Pai Memorial Award.
Donations are eligible for tax benefits under Sec 80G of the Income Tax 1961 (50% tax exemption) and MLF is registered under the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 2010.