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Old 27th June 2008, 12:08   #76
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BSNL Banaglore too has no issue with the connection; infact i did face a problem when i swithed from HP250 to 900 pm unlimited presently its at 750 pm

My bill for 6000 was waived off by just paying then the monthly charge of 900 and giving a application at their office.
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Old 27th June 2008, 12:11   #77
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Default YetiBlog® - 23rd June 2008 - Monday at the exchange

11 am

I walk up to the same guard who gives me a broad smile and write me out the chit.

Kaise hai aap? I ask with a smile.
Theek hai Sir, jaaiye.

Up a floor, I cringe at the kids cycles and pan spit before I turn into the ghost corridor.
The door at the end of the hallway is open today, I can see one man sitting behind a very, very old computer.
The kind of computer whose monitor looks like an oil funnel, right up to the little tip at the end.

I get a little closer and notice and TVS keyboard. So that explains that clackety clack.

He’s on the phone chatting to someone. He also appears to be the only living man on this level, apart from me. He’s still chatting but he looks straight at me, smiles nods and motions for me to sit in an old chair close by.
2 minutes later

Yes?
Mrs. M?
Abhi aayegi, baithiye
(She will be here shortly, sit)

In 5 minutes a lady walks in. She looks like someone who gets things done. It must be Mrs. M. It is.
Mrs. M is no nonsense and yet very very helpful. She is also kind enough to explain to me what has probably happened.

In a nutshell – the accounts department has switched me over to 849/- night unlimited on my request. Their system shows me as a 849 subscriber. However due to lack of communication, they have not informed the internet department who is busy counting all the MBs I have downloaded, regardless of log on time.

That is the problem. Now what is the solution?

I cannot help you as I cannot access your details.
But Madam you are the internet section, if you don’t have my details, who will?
You go to the 6-and-a-half floor and meet Mrs. J. She is the senior accounts officer. She will help you.
(I am not kidding about the 6-and-a-half floor)

I look at her with mixed emotions, I am imagining myself running around this place.. I guess my face gives it away.

She smiles. It is like rain in the desert. I like her immediately.

Don’t worry. She will help you. If she cannot help you, come back here. I will take you around the exchange and help you. Don’t worry.

I smile brightly. I like her a lot.
Thank you Mrs. M.


11.40am
I take the lift to the 7th floor and climb down the the 6-and-a-half. There are cabins and offices, it still seems like there are more chairs and tables than people. Everything is very unclean. There is no air-conditioning in sight.
I didn’t expect DeutscheBank, but I honestly expected a better office. I am feeling sorry for the work conditions and the people working here.
A 50 metre walk and I am apparently in the accounts office.

I have seen only ONE machine that resembles a modern PC so far, opposite Mrs. M’s table. No, I am not referring to flat screens and stuff, that is still a luxury. I am referring to monitors and computers that are well over 15 years old, bare wire hastily taped in places…

The accounts section is one large room with metal tables and chairs strewn around, free standing. Strangely this looks like a women-only section. I see about 8 ladies in sarees chatting and working. To the left is a massive cabin with Air conditioning. Outside is the brass plate that declares Mrs. J’s name and position.
She is busy talking to someone.

I wait outside.

Another lady looks at me curiously. Yes? I am waiting for Mrs. J, I have some work with her. I was sent by Mrs. M.
OK.

The office is staring a little curiously at me.

I am in jeans and a clean plain tee shirt and have tied up my hair into a ponytail. I look fit enough to marry an conservative man’s daughter and I feel funny.

Mrs. J is alone, I knock and walk in. Mrs. J is pleasant, young and surprisingly helpful. As usual it takes a little while for her to realize what is wrong. But here it comes.

No, there is no mistake, you are on Plan 849. I can see, it is active from 5th May.
Yes Mrs. J, but the internet department insists that I am on plan 399.
Oh.
She smiles. I have understood the problem. It is our mistake. We will amend the bill.
I am smiling really broadly. I want to jump over the table like they do after a tennis match.
Now?

Wait.


Mrs J has 2 computers. One decrepit dinosaur and a brand new black IBM. The carton is lying close by.
She writes down some details from the dinosaur and swings her chair by to the IBM. She has started Internet Explorer and is checking some details online. I realize that it is probably an admin account as she has entered a name and password. Twice.
Click click click. Type type type.
10 minutes have passed. Mrs. J looks a little frustrated.

I cannot access your account details. I need to know your day and night usage, so I can amend the bill.
OK…

You have to get me details of your Day usage and night usage.
Me?
Yes. Go to the 8th floor and meet Mr. J. Show him this bill, I have written a note on it and he will do the needful. Then you bring that detail to me and I will ask for your bill to be amended.
Uhh.. OK.


12.30 pm
I climb up. Be strong Sam. I am fuelled by hope. 2 people have admitted a probable mistake. Now I only hope that my log on times are after 12.
I find a door with Mr. J written on it in brass. Sub-divisional Engineer.

Cannot be. Why would I go to a senior officer in the MTNL to get a simple print out of my Internet usage. This is simple mundane data. In fact I should be able to access it myself, on the internet. Why does MTNL treat it as level one priority data, to be available with A-list officers?
Do they not have enough on their hands already?

Mr J?
I ask an old peon sitting in the corridor.
The corridor has changed a lot since the first floor.
Everything is still old and babu-ish but it is clean here and everything is air-conditioned. I am obviously at an important floor.

Udhar – he points out out of the corridor, back to the same door I saw earlier.
Udhar?
Haan.

I go back to the door. It is locked and there is a padlock on it.
Lock hai.
Lock hai?
Haan.
OK ek minute. Kya kaam hai?
Uhh… internet usage detail chahiye.

He squints at me. He has not understood me of course. He takes me to another gentleman further inside.
While the gentleman is courteous and offers me a seat, I realize that there is no way he can help me. He doesn’t even have a computer at his desk.

Kya hua?

I explain my problem from the start, in my woeful voice and finally for effect I push the bill in his direction. I have down to a routine now, perfectly timed with the right pause-for-effect settings. Chauda hazaar ka bill Sir. Ek mahiney ka!

The guy to his right asks\

Inturnat problem? Kaunsa area hai?
Chup re chavan,
the other guy says, linesman nahi chaihiye. Yeh computer ka problem hai.
Oh,
says chavan. Ready to spit any moment.

You do one thing. I will tell you, there is only one person who can solve your problem.

I brighten up. Yes Sir?

You go down to the first floor and ask for Mrs. M. Only she can help you.

Last edited by Sam Kapasi : 27th June 2008 at 12:23.
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Old 27th June 2008, 12:17   #78
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Sam, welcome to the world of round-you-goes.
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Old 27th June 2008, 12:19   #79
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Sam so you were back to square one. Very frustrating indeed.
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Old 27th June 2008, 12:24   #80
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Hmm so its back to Mrs M now
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Old 27th June 2008, 12:32   #81
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I think these gals fell in love with sam at first sight and want to see him again and again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Kapasi View Post

You do one thing. I will tell you, there is only one person who can solve your problem.

I brighten up. Yes Sir?

You go down to the first floor and ask for Mrs. M. Only she can help you.
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Old 27th June 2008, 12:41   #82
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Sam sir- This will get resolved for sure- i have this 100% positive feeling.

It takes a lot of running around and i dunno how much money you lose in travelling or valuable time wasted- but i am pretty much hopeful it will get resolved for sure.

I am on MTNL Triband too btw.
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Old 27th June 2008, 12:57   #83
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HAHAHAH, i cant help but laugh back to the 1st floor
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Old 27th June 2008, 13:33   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Kapasi View Post
I am very frustrated, but I must keep a bright and cheery voice if I want help.
In such frustrating times it is very difficult to control one's temper. Nice to read that you kept your cool. I admire your patience.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Kapasi View Post
I climb up. Be strong Sam. I am fuelled by hope. 2 people have admitted a probable mistake. Now I only hope that my log on times are after 12.
This entire experience sucks. Even if we are just reading it, one can imagine the frustration and agony you went through. Almost all sarkari offices function like this. The common man is at the mercy of such lazy, mostly corrupt and inefficient govt. staff.

MTNL should be dragged to the consumer court for harassing customers like this. One pays for using the service but is treated with so much arrogance rather than plain respect and courtesy. This should make it to the media.

Quote:
Originally Posted by archangel View Post
I think these gals fell in love with sam at first sight and want to see him again and again.
Thats another story for Sam to post. LOL.
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Old 27th June 2008, 13:46   #85
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Sam you are getting good response.
It took me more than 10 trips to get my BSNL connection closed. Some time someone is absent, next time he is in field. Later on they tell me that go to Xth floor. On each and every trip, I managed to climb 5 floors atleast 7 times. No I am not exaggerating, its the truth. Later I come to know I will have to pay 700rs. more for this.
As soon as I pay that amount and go to computer section on 5th floor ( from ground floor where I paid money ), they assure me that the connection will get closed. It did, but not without too much hassle. I was going round and round..
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Old 27th June 2008, 13:56   #86
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Wow! What a tale.
When I decided to get rid of BSNL, I was stonewalled at local exchange.
So I went to main office and told them I am moving out of country, and I won't be available to answer phones etc., after 3 days.
The connection was disconnected immediately
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Old 27th June 2008, 14:08   #87
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Default YetiBlog® - 23rd June 2008 - Be strong Sam

12.45 pm

I lose my cool.
Sir aap log kya mazak kar rahe hai? Are you kidding me?
I went to the first floor, they sent me to 6-and-a-half, they sent me to 8th and that office was close and now you say 1st?

He nods. Aap saab se milenge?
Haan.
He speaks to another man. Bade saab ko bolo ek customer unse milna chahte hai.

5 minutes later I am ushered into the office of the topman at the exchange. It is a massive cabin, albeit old fashioned. In it are 2 large twin tables with 2 large executive chairs.

The chairs are covered with striped beach towels.

One chair is empty, the other is occupied by the divisional engineer of the telecom department. He is obviously a busy and important man.
He is also on the phone having a conversation in Tamil with someone. He motions for me to sit while he is still talking.

I sit and look around. Not much to see really. The aircon is on full blast. It is a bit cold here. I wonder why they sit on striped beach towels.
5 minutes later he is still talking. He smiles and signals humbly for 5 more minutes. I smile back and nod. Nice guy.

Click.

Yes, what can I do for you?

I must be quick. I offer him my bill and explain my woes. In a few minutes he has understood.

14500 is a very high bill!
I agree Sir.
So now what can I do for you?
It's not you Sir, all I need is a detailed usage chart, showing my log on, log off and data transfer by day and night. I am trying very hard to get it, but no one here can help. I am so sorry to bother you, but who can help me?
I can help you.
You sir?
Yes, I will give you your detailed usage sheet.


I am in shock. This is secretarial work, he is the boss of the exchange. There should be someone else outside who should be able to email this data to the accounts department. They cannot afford to function like this for God's sake, this is the INTERNET PROVIDER we are talking about.

Sir, I don't want to bother you. It is just that neither the accounts and the internet department have this information. If you can guide me to the one who has this information...


He gets up and walks to the other computer. He starts up Internet Explorer and logs in. So obviously all the information is online. It cannot be that the others do not have access, it MUST be that they do not know how to use it.
This is NOT classified information for God's sake!

In a few minutes he has all my usage details on his screen. However it is also very clear he has never seen this information before before in his life.
He peers at the screen. Is this what you are looking for?

I peer at the screen which is a little far away. Yes sir, looks like it.

Shall I print and give you?
Uhh yes Sir thanks.


5 minutes later he is still loading continuous stationery into a dot matrix TVS printer. I want to rush into his area and help him, but dare not. I am just in shock that the boss of this joint has to help a simple consumer for such basic information. Where is his secretary??

Time is wasted in silly things like unseen confirmation "OK to print" dialogues on his screen. Finally the command is given.

SCREE CHIRR CHIRR SCREE CHIRR CHIRR SCREE CHIRR CHIRR.

He turns and tries to make conversation.
Have you been here long?
yes sir, since morning.
OK. He looks at my bill.
849 eh?
Yes sir.
How many MB free you get with 849?
I don't know Sir, I have forgotten.
Ahh. OK.


SCREE CHIRR CHIRR

He get up and stares at the printer. Then stares at the screen. The first page is printed.

OH!
What happened Sir?
I ask.
There are 23 pages of details!!
Oh.
It will take very long. All too many details are there.
Uhh...
Suppose I give you only summary, will do?
I don't know sir.


SCREE CHIRR CHIRR SCREE CHIRR CHIRR SCREE CHIRR CHIRR

He stares at the printer, then the screen, then at me.
I will cancel this command.
Uhhh..

I will give you summary.
Whatever you think is OK Sir.
I will give you the first 3 pages and then the summary. If the department does not accept it you come back. I think they will accept it, what do you think?
Me Uh Sir, if you tell them to accept it they will.
No, wait.

SCREE CHIRR CHI...
He puts the printer off in the middle of the print.

I am ready to cry.

He turns it on again and prints the last page. He collects the 4 pages of stationery and hands it over to me. He writes his landline number on the page.
If they don't accept, you call me.

Thank you sir.

1.25 pm

In my hand I am holding a summary that says

Day Usage: 1700MB
Night Usage: 11000MB
Overlap usage: 1200MB

This might be my ticket out.

Thank you Sir.

Last edited by Sam Kapasi : 27th June 2008 at 14:11.
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Old 27th June 2008, 14:31   #88
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so essentially you will have to pay for the 500 mb extra usage during the day
what is OVERLAP usage ?
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Old 27th June 2008, 14:58   #89
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So the actual bill was Rs. 1700 + 8% service tax + Modem Rental

ha
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Old 27th June 2008, 15:01   #90
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Does MTNL really not display usage on the internet? BSNL allows you to check usage on their website. Moreover it is updated by the minute.
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