After I published my last post on the Airtel saga with the latest threats, things kind of escalated. It got picked up in social media, Airtel Presence got in touch with me again. And a reporter from Midday contacted me to cover the story.
She made calls to verify the story with Airtel.
I got calls from Airtel not to tweet further on the matter and that they were working to resolve it. I agreed to do so for a while till I saw what progress was being made.
Then I got a letter from their official address this time.
This time, it mentions the amount payable without any discounts as opposed to before. Full amount.
I replied to that email asking yet again for details of my gprs usage.
Then I got a call from the Airtel representative Kunal again, and he wanted to include someone called Rahul. They told me that the amount I got billed for is correct and to pay the balance.
I again requested for the bill with usage details. This time, after five months of asking, I got them. (more further below)
I told them that I wanted to complain against the treatment I got as an Airtel customer from their representatives making the threatening calls. It was as important as my festering problem with my Airtel bill That started way long ago, when Airtel SMSd me to tell me my usage exceeded my limit.
They replied that they would send me the bills I had requested for. I asked them if they had heard what I said. They said yes, I would get the bills.
So I repeated that I want to make a complaint against the employees making threatening calls to me.
They again replied that they would send me the bills I had asked for. I asked them if they heard what I said. They said I would get the bills.
So I said “I want to complain agains the employees who made threatening calls against me. – Did you hear this”
They replied that they had taken care of the calls and I would not get them again.
I said, “No. I said I want action against those two specific employees and to know what was done about them”
They replied that I would not get any more threatening calls.
I said I want to make a complaint and with complaint number and all.
They replied that first they will solve my billing issue, then address anything else.
I find this inspired deafness most intriguing. Why the refusal to acknowledge a request of complaint of harassment at all? Why not address an urgent harassment issue immediately?
The only guess I can make is that if it is routine practice and accepted to threaten customers as a part of recovering payments, then how can they target only two for action? Action that is regular practice? They were doing their jobs, no?
In the meanwhile, I checked my bill. I am being billed an astonishing Rs.7580.70/- for what amounts to 492MB of data. For a general reference – you can hit this usage in a couple of days by watching a film or two on youtube and checking email (your mileage may vary). Here’s the bill.
Notice the difference.
In the meanwhile, information is flooding in on many, many such instances of overbilling and unhelpful customer support. People are contacting me to tell their own stories. And it seems it is not only Airtel. Many people speaking about Vodafone, a few about other providers.
After all, if everyone is stinking, then no one is stinking, right?