Already have a mobile and a car number plate with your lucky series? Now, add your bank account to the list. You can flaunt a personalized account number and add a touch of exclusivity to your financial transactions.
The service introduced by Development Credit Bank (DCB)—for its elite customers with a quarterly balance of at least Rs 5 lakh—gives both savings and current account holders the option to pick their choice of last six digits in their account numbers.
The craze for VIP numbers peaked a few years back with cellular operators offering mobile numbers ending with special series such as 99999. This became hugely popular in states like Punjab and Haryana as operators put these premium numbers up for bidding and pocketed lakhs of rupees.
Made available to postpaid customers, an Airtel spokesperson said the price tag attached to such numbers starts at Rs 1,000 but did not give details on how much these premium numbers can fetch at the most. In the past, people have paid up to Rs 15-20 lakh for their choice of numbers. The state-owned MTNL has a bidding process on its website for both pre- and postpaid subscribers.
Although DCB does not let you bid for a particular series like you can for your mobile number, the bank works on a first-come-first-serve basis without charging any fee for the service. Launched recently across its 80 branches, the bank says the service has generated a positive response from its customers, but did not give details on how many customers had opted for it. At the moment, none of the big lenders like HDFC Bank or ICICI Bank offer this service. Praveen Kutty, head, retail & SME banking, DCB, says that the service launched under the bank’s elite programme also offers other value-formoney benefits and has received positive feedback from its customers.
A banking expert, however, says that under core banking the account holder is no longer a branch customer but part of a centralized database. The bank identifies the customer using a customer ID number, which is generated sequentially. In some core banking solutions, bank officials have the option to decide the number while in some others it is randomly generated. “We are not sure how the central bank would react if banks started selling premium account numbers like traffic authorities or telecom operators. We would not like to freely provide this option to all customers because it will add to the costs and does not really provide any benefit,” said a senior official with a large private bank.
But given the craze for lucky numbers, numerologist Sanjay B Jumaani, whom actors like Salman Khan consult, says he has recommended many of his clients to go for a lucky series when it comes to their cars, houses and mobile phone numbers. He says these numbers have an important bearing on one’s career and personal life.
“I give simple solutions to my clients and not really ask them to splurge huge amounts to get a particular series. A lot of these people get these numbers for reasons other than numerology as it’s just a fancy thing to have and also because they have halfbaked knowledge of numerology,” Jumaani adds.