As a scientist at the National Botanical Research Institute in Lucknow, Virendra Pal Kapoor, now 72, spent years developing eco-friendly, toxin-free, herbal products. Ironically, as an investor, he contaminated his own portfolio by making the cardinal mistake of buying insurance when not needed. To be fair to the scientist, he was taken in by the advice given by his life insurance agent, whom he met in the premises of his bank.
Kapoor, now retired, is a happy customer of State Bank of India and has built a relationship of trust over decades with the bank. “I met this agent at my bank, and since SBI is government owned, I thought that the companies that he represented (SBI Mutual Fund and SBI Life Insurance Co. Ltd) would also be backed by the government,”said Kapoor.
In 2007, at the age of 64-plus, Kapoor bought a unit-linked insurance plan (Ulip) on the advice of his agent. According to Kapoor, his agent, Vinod Kumar Harjai, who is an independent financial adviser (IFA), suggested that he buy SBI Life Unit Plus-II single-premium Ulip for a term of five years. The rationale offered was that the Ulip would not only help Kapoor invest in equities just like mutual funds, but also