When Annette Thayanandi Emmanuel opened a savings account with Seylan Bank in the Zone 03 Arunachalam Refugee Camp off Chettikulam, Vavuniya in June 2008, little would she have realised that she would walk away with a lap top in Seylan Bank’s mega ‘Seylan Thagi Pita Thagi’ rewards scheme four years later.
Hailing from the Chemallai village, eight kms off Mullaitivu, 39-year-old Emmanuel is one of 10 lucky monthly winners of the main prizes in Seylan Bank’s mega ‘Seylan Thagi Pita Thagi’ rewards scheme. These December 2011 draw winners received their awards from Chairman Eastman Narangoda and Executive Director R. Nadarajah at a simple ceremony at the Bank’s Head Office in Kollupitiya recently.
They all came from different parts of Sri Lanka. They were D.T.S. Perera (Bandaragama Branch), H.D.M. Lakmal Kumara (Maharagama Branch), M.G.M.U.M. Samri (Hingurakgoda Branch), G.G. Ariyapala (Weliweriya Branch), M.N.P. Nihara (Sarikkamulla Branch), A.A. Kalyani (Matugama Branch), K.M.G. Shiromani (Maharagama Branch), S.H. Saman Kumara (Baduraliya Branch) and S.R.K.M. Liyanage (Raddolugama Branch).
“Winning a prize in ‘Seylan Thagi Pita Thagi’ was furthest in my mind. It came as a big shock which then became a pleasant surprise,” Emmanuel said.
Recalling her days at the Zone 03 Arunachalam Refugee Camp she said, “Lots of bank people came and encouraged us refugees to open accounts with them. However there was a marked difference in the way Seylan Bank staff spoke to us. They treated us all alike – with dignity, irrespective of our differences in caste, creed and social standing. This is what primarily attracted me to Seylan Bank. They also worked very efficiently and with great speed. We first thought a lot and then deposited our money and pawned our jewellery with Seylan and have never regretted that decision.”
Chemmalai is a Hindu fishing village whose 347 families constitute government servants, fisher folk and paddy farmers among others. According to Emmanuel, most of the people of her village now bank with Seylan Bank and that includes her fisherman husband Kuhadas (42).
“My elder son Ananth (17) recently began work at the Road Development Authority. He told me that with his very first salary he would open Seylan accounts for himself and my younger children Kajani (13) and Dishan (11). Seylan Bank is now a part of the lives of the people of the Chemmalai village and we’re happy to stay that way,” she says.
Chairman of Seylan Bank Eastman Narangoda described Emmanuel’s story as both a wonderful testimony and sincere endorsement of the Bank’s service excellence. “A banking relationship is not only about rupees and cents. It is also about forging and then nurturing human relationships over a period of time. Among the numerous elements that come into play are trust and confidence, expectation and reward. I’m sincerely happy that Seylan Bank has been able to bring about a tangible change in the lives of Emmanuel, her family and the people of Chemmalai. On a broader scale, this is just one example of a national role we play in the lives of a larger number of people across the length and breadth of Sri Lanka as the ‘Bank with a Heart.’”
Launched at the end of last year, ‘Seylan Thagi Pita Thagi’ is a one-of-a-kind rewards scheme which offers a total of 2630 prizes a month including the ten top monthly winners and 20 monthly winners per branch.
Acclaimed as the most innovative rewards scheme in contemporary banking history in Sri Lanka, ‘Seylan Thagi Pita Thagi’ runs over six months and has a total of 15,720 winners in all. The overall winner selected from the grand draw at the end of the six-month promotion in April this year wins a super luxury house worth Rs. 15 m.