Maid Gone Bad! Victim Joyce Saldanha Reveals Theft of ATM Card by Maid
Maid Gone Bad! Steals House Owner’s ATM Card, Withdraws Rs 3,59,000. Victim Joyce Saldanha, aged 70 reveals the complete story to Team Mangalorean
Mangaluru: These days finding an honest maid/servant is very hard- and even if there are a few available they demand huge salary- but with no option left many senior citizens who are left alone in their hometown, when their sibling are in foreign countries hire these servants trusting them and having good faith in them. But unfortunately, many a times the owners who had hired these maids believing them as truthful helpers are duped and land in deep consequences. Here is one such case, where an ATM card of a senior citizen was stolen by her ‘TRUSTWORTHY??’ maid, and a huge amount was withdrawn from her bank account at the ATM kiosk.
Joyce Saldanha, aged 70 years, a coffee estate owner, residing on Britto Lane, Falnir Road-Mangaluru is the victim in this ATM theft case. I have known Aunty Joyce for the last three years- she was the one who gifted me a nice Black Daschund puppy, which has now grown to a full-fledged ‘Boy’, named “OhBama?”. Also, I had met Aunty Joyce’s maid Fathima at her Child’s First birthday, where I had clicked the pictures. But today I was really surprised to note that such a “Nice Young Lady” would do “Such a Bad Thing”. Anyways speaking to Team Mangalorean Joyce Saldanha said, “I am relieved that the police have cracked down the case and arrested the culprits. The female, named Fathima (aged 28) who stole my ATM card was raised by me since her childhood after her parents who worked in our coffee estate passed away. I sent her to school, and even gave her PU education, after which she started working for Pizza Hut in Bengaluru. Later she wanted to get married, and I took care of the wedding expenses. But this marriage didn’t last since they broke up after three months as husband and wife. She got married again on her own expenses three years ago and had a child. They even spent their honeymoon in our picturesque estate, with all their expenses paid by me. The first birthday celebration of the child was hosted by me, bearing all the expenses”.
“Fathima and her husband Selvam (31) of the second marriage were helping me out with my housework and other errands. I even got Selvam a job at a supermarket in town. I treated them like my own family members, and they were with me from 7 April 2016 until 14 April 2017. February of this year I had taken Fathima, Selvam and their child along with me to my estate for a leisure time. It was during this time that Fathima had stolen my Canara Bank ATM card from my bag, and even got the card pin number which I had written in my diary. It was a brand new ATM card, which was not even put into use by me- and I didn’t know that it was stolen until I came to know recently when the money was withdrawn without my knowledge” added Saldanha.
Saldanha further said, “I went on a foreign tour to Mauritius with a group from 19 June 2017 until 26 June 2017. In the meantime, Fathima and Selvam, who had left the job at my house (14 April 2017) well before I went on that vacation, and were staying in a rented house in the city, had withdrawn money from my bank account through ATM kiosk between 16 May 2017 and 27 June 2017. Although the messages were being sent to my Mobile, I was not able to retrieve them since my mobile had some problems. Also when I was abroad I was not able to get any messages. But when I got back from my vacation on 26th June and turned my mobile on, a bunch of SMS’s popped up, including the cash withdrawal alerts. This shocked me, and I was desperate to find out who might have done this”.
“The first thing I did was by going to the Supermarket to enquire whether Selvam was still employed because the couple were planning to go back to their hometown in Vellore-Tamil Nadu. Found out that he was still employed there. Next thing I did was filing a FIR at Mangaluru South Police Station. A through interrogation by the police made the couple admit that they committed the crime. I am thankful to all the police authorities from the senior level to the constables, including SI Beliyappa of MangaluruSouth Police Station for handling the case and putting the culprits behind the bars” added Joyce.
She further said, ” Before Fathima left work at my house, she had asked me to buy her a gold chain, and that she would repay the money of the chain purchase later -for which I agreed. Now that gold chain worth Rs 60,000 has been confiscated by the police, along with Rs 2,20,000 cash, which is part of the money stolen from the ATM using my card. Selvam had even purchased a used Scooter, which is now returned back to the dealer, and the amount refunded. The couple had also bought some household items like a sofa and other kitchen items with the stolen money. Once the case is taken up by the magistrate this week, and on the judge’s verdict, I will get my money recovered by the police, now kept in the court. “
“This instance is indeed an experience for me in future, not to trust any servant/maid.I will be very careful with my belongings, including my purse, credit cards, jewellery etc. What has really hurt me is that a girl whom I had taken care of, given education, got her married on my expenses, took care of her child, even celebrated child’s first birthday on my expenses, also done lot more by looking after her and her husband/child like my own family members -look what I got in return. Ungratefulness is the right word I guess. My message to every senior citizen or for that matter anyone, please be careful with your maids/servants, even if they look innocent or trustworthy. Don’t be a victim, which was in my case. This couple has now learned a lesson, and once they are put behind the bars for a long time, hope they will change their habits after released from jail” concluded Joyce Saldanha.
In perspective- Caregivers, housekeepers, maids, nannies, cooks or domestic help – call them by any name, domestic workers in the country, for that matter Mangaluru, even though they are still on the fringes, they are very much needed these days- and finding a good and trustworthy help is hard. Like the saying “Don’t judge a book by its cover”, similarly never judge a maid by her looks and innocence. They may seem to be trustworthy, caring, honest, committed etc- but behind your back, they could be backstabbers, just like in this case. So if you have a servant/maid, it is advisable to keep an eye on them, their movements and behaviour. Installing CCTV in the house will be your best bet to catch them red handed about their illegal activities- and many cases have been successfully solved due to footage on CCTV. Let’s keep a watch on “Maids Gone Bad?”