Airtel to pay for harassing old subscriber

The New Delhi District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum imposed a fine of  Rs 25,000 on Bharti Airtel for harassing a post-paid subscriber.

Bharti Airtel has demanded fresh documents to verify his six-year-old connection and then stopping outgoing calls on his number.

The telecom major has been held guilty of rendering deficient service and causing harassment to complainant Manoj Kumar Sharma, a school teacher.

 Consumer court said “A post-paid connection is issued to subscribers only after the residential proof like passport, driving license, ration card and voter ID card are provided to the opposite party (Airtel), otherwise it could have never issued a post-paid connection to any subscriber”.

“It is a clear case of deficiency on the part of opposite party to harass the subscriber (Sharma) without any rhyme and reason. Opposite party is directed to pay (Sharma) Rs 25,000 as harassment, mental agony and litigation charges as the consumer (Sharma) has been suffering without any valid reasons since 2009,” the bench presided by C K Chaturvedi said.

 Manoj Kumar Sharma, a resident of Lodhi Road Complex here, in his complaint filed in October 2009 had said he had been using an Airtel post-paid connection for over six years when the firm’s service centre called him up and asked him to provide fresh set of documents for verifying his number.

 He had agreed and had asked them to send someone to collect the documents from his home but no one came, he had said in his complaint and added that Airtel then blocked all outgoing calls from his number without informing him.

 While in its written statement, Airtel replied it was acting as per the provisions of the Indian Telegraph Act and the TRAI guidelines.

 But the forum rejected the contention of Airtel by saying that its act was totally arbitrary.

One thought on “Airtel to pay for harassing old subscriber

  1. CONGRATS to Mr. Sharma to have won the case against AIrTel. He had the courage, time and energy to approach Consumer Forum and got the justice. There are lot of people like me who are suffering at the hands of these service providers. They have the liberty to create troubles for the subscribers and nobody in the government – like TRAI etc.- are bothered about it. I have a long list of my distresses with Airtel as I am the pre-paid subscriber. The treatment of Airtel with the pre -paid subscribers is worst. The authorities are immune to the sufferers. They are good in money extracting. They change their schemes or plans unilaterally without informing the subscriber. The greatest problem is to find out the so called Customer Care Executive, though now it is a paid service. You can continue to press 1,2,3,4, et al, but you will not find him anywhere. In my case I started searching for the Customer Care Executive on 30th May to enquire about the latest charges in regard to pre –paid connection. After spending almost one hour daily on 121 and 198, I could not reach anywhere. Ultimately I sent a mail on 3rd June 2012 requesting them for an early reply, before 6th June 2012, as I had to leave for abroad for medical treatment. I also mentioned in my mail that I am a decade old subscriber of 72 years and I need the reply before leaving. There was a reason for this enquiry –due to the dictum – once bitten twice shy. In my mail I raised some pointed queries-
    1. Previously the normal charges for a call was Rs.0.01 paisa per second for a year, then it was reduced to 6 months and then perhaps again reduced to some lesser period. I could know only when suddenly Re. 1/- was deducted for one call.
    2. The rates for calling US and Canada were 0.1 paisa per second for a month on a recharge of Rs. 57/- but it has been changed. I could know only when suddenly Re. 8/- were deducted for one minute.
    3. Till last year (May 2011) rates for taking the instrument (connection) out of India – Previously it was Rs 100/- one time at the time of entrance in the other country but now it has been changed. I could know only when suddenly Re. 100/- were deducted for one month. Previously retention of connection was free for first three months
    4. Had I known this beforehand, I would not have brought the instrument here with me as I am not using it at all.

    All the information about changes in tariff is kept secret. In fact, it is nothing but cheating the subscriber. There was a time when the customer was given a respectful status. Now we are living in a New Age where everything is mechanical and there is no need of any ethics or value system
    One may be senior citizen or decade old customer; you will be treated mechanically as any other person. We have imported the so called customer care system but we have not imported the feelings or sensitivity of human touch.
    There is a system of Nodal Officer who is supposed to coordinate and listen to customers’ problem but he seems to have no time for the customers. I had a post- paid connection too but it was converted to pre-paid as I kept it idle for more than 3 months. I surrendered it as I had no utility of 2 connections.
    In the situation I once again CONGRATULATE Mr. Manoj K Sharma tor taking a lead and take AIrtel to Consumer Forum. You are torchbearer for all hapless customers like me. Thanks…BNG

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