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Old 13th October 2009, 23:31   #1
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Default The 'customer' in the indian car scene

The 'customer' in the indian car scene.

For the last few days or rather a week,this word 'customer' has harassed me more than i thought it ever could.Well it seems,to me i am not a human being anymore,but just a 'customer'.

It all started with a silly worded statement,'abey yaar,pehle is wale customer ko toh free kar doon,phir aoonga...", hmmm i said to myself,maybe thats just the linguistic style,no big deal,but then subsequently,i realized it is not just a linguistic style,its a perception,a very serious convoluted perception.

This story,the odd lady and gentlemen,involves a magnificent Fiat Grande Punto,tata-fiat after sale service,bajaj allianz and well me,the 'customer' of course.
So there i was cruising in the streets of 'delhi-6' last week,in my punto,when all of a sudden,a 'vikram',hit my car from the left side,which resulted in my car going to the right hand side,and hitting an iron road divider.

And boom,the tyre gets blown up,the car takes a severe hit.I step outside,to murmuring appreciation or rather applause for the whole incident by my brothers in god's big happy family.Then upon closer inspection,i find that the front bumper hasn't even dislodged,there is no hint of any body damage,i initiate my own murmuring appreciation of fiat's build quality.But i was stranded,and that too far far away from home.Like a flash in the dark evening clouds,a voice whispered,'change the tyre',my eyes lit up,biceps got pumped,and i was on my way to changing the tyre.

"Wah,wah",i said to myself,"bach gaye......",but it was like a "bach gaye" a fan says after watching Sachin tendulkar blasting his way to a century,and later realizes that India has lost the match. Well,my situation was similar,the 'tie rod',of my car had got bent.So i franticly looked up the 24 hour help-line number of tata-fiat in the car's manual for some assistance,and rang them up,,they hung up without even taking the call.And dhan-ten -nan-----a customer was born.

The sun rises,the birds start chirping,the customer wakes up,drives his car 40kms away from home at the speed of 20 km/hr to the service centre. And the intimation is done,and a claim is filed.The service advisor tells me,"sir pura steering assembly change hoga,tie rod alag se fiat ka nahin aata....",words that remind me of the horror stories of fiat a.s.s,and laughs of maniacal anti-fiat uncles shouting """i told you so"".I tell him to check again,as only the tie rod is bent,but the advisor insists to change the entire steering assembly,i say ok,and leave the car with him,and just before leaving,i hear him shout on his phone,"abey yaar,pehle is wale customer ko toh free kar doon,phir aoonga...".Its thursday today,the car is promised to delivered back by monday

I visit another fiat service centre on my way back home,and they beat their chests claiming,"tie rod end aata hai".I talk to a couple of mechanics,they too advise to change the entire assembly instead of the rod end,as who knows they say,that after replacing the end,and alignment,if any other problem crops up,they insist get the entire thing changed.

The sun rises again,the birds chirp again,its friday today,i call up the advisor,he says,"surveyor nahin aaya hai,aap baad mein phone karo",three calls later,same story.He states that the car can be repaired in one day flat,just that he needs the "approval",i say ok!!

Thursday--->>>claim is filed
Friday---->>>Surveyor doesn't show up
Saturday---->>>Surveyor doesn't show up
Sunday--->>>Surveyor doesn't show up
Monday--->>>Finally,Surveyor does show up.
But no approval given.

I call up the claim manager at bajaj-allianz,he apologizes,and says the approval will be given by 1430 hours.

So its tuesday today,the customer takes an auto for the 5th time,sweating his nerves out in delhi heat,pays 280 for the auto ride,one way,in prime time,to the showroom,for the 5th time.The advisor simply shrugs his shoulders and says he can't do jack till the approval lands in,and,i the customer,simply want to decapitate myself.

I decide to call up the surveyor myself,while in the showroom.And guess what?the surveyor turns out to be a 15 year old girl,no don't get excited,this is just a figure of speech.I demand an explanation as to why he didn't show up on thursday,friday,saturday,sunday,and he SHOUTS BACK like a 15 year old girl,goes hysterical claiming that i am lying that the car has been there since thursday,he abuses me,says that he visited the service centre all those days,and the car wasn't there.Also,he claims,that the intimation was done on sunday,when it was don e right before my eyes on thusrsday.He explicitly tells me to buzz off,stating that the entire episode is my fault,that the service centre and i are lying to him,he shouts one more time before hanging up on me" not my fault".The tone of this conversation was,"just go away,who do you think you are,you are just another CUSTOMER.Well so much for customer is always right.I guess i just met an accidental moron.And now the claim manager has stopped taking my calls.

Its tuesday night,prime-time diwali days,my only car is turning into dust,has been standing outside the service centre for the past week,i have been traveling on autos all over delhi,and have racked up a bill of over 8000,facial costs extra which are attributable to the dust my face has had to eat,while traveling.Oh,and one more thing,there is no 'approval',so no repair work on the car

All the time in the service centre,hearing the word customer being thrown around for endless amounts of cases,was just shouting one thing back at me.....

You see,you worthless piece of trash,you are not a human,you are a customer,we don't value your time or money,you are just another statistic,you were human once,yes you were.You know when?
Do you remember when you were buying the car?when we'd actually call you back,drive to your home,for a test drive,hell drop you back home if you asked for it,give you chocolates etc,etc..... you were a human then,we valued your time,your money,because we wanted it,now please take a hike,you are just a customer.
Another file,another number,we just don't care.

You are not a human being,you are just a 'thing',ubiquitous and way too available.




This is my car outside the showroom gathering dust,
The 'customer' in the indian car scene-moto_0551.jpg
The 'customer' in the indian car scene-moto_0550.jpg


And this is what reminded me of writing a post,a tata nano,in the service area.
The 'customer' in the indian car scene-moto_0543.jpg

And this is the bent tie rod,which a mechanics claim can be repaired within 3 hours,
if they get the permission to go ahead.
The 'customer' in the indian car scene-moto_0538.jpg




And therefore i pray,my fellow 'customers',may you be treated as humans in the 'indian car scene'. May your life savings that you spent on that car be treated as worthy,and may you be treated as worthy,may god have mercy on you "customers"........

Last edited by GTO : 17th October 2009 at 15:34. Reason: Absolutely no profanity on Team-BHP please
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Old 13th October 2009, 23:47   #2
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Oouch!! This is sad. and an eyeopener, I was just going to take insurance from Bajaj Allianz for my new car. I am having a rethink now. Did you take the insurance from outside or through the dealer?

I am not sure how much that is going to cost but going by your description, instead of giving moolah to autowalahs, I would have paid the amount from my pocket!
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Old 13th October 2009, 23:52   #3
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I took the insurance from outside,i too would have preferred to pay by my pocket,except the repair bill is only 47000 inr.
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Old 13th October 2009, 23:55   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smilenow View Post
I took the insurance from outside,i too would have preferred to pay by my pocket,except the repair bill is only 47000 inr.
47K is huge sum indeed! Did you try escalating the issue in Bajaj Allianz? I mean there has to be a way out now..
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Old 14th October 2009, 00:00   #5
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I did,and the claim manager doesn't even want to take my calls now,the call centre guys are not lodging a complaint,and my car is rotting.
The claim portal on their website is not working,basically half their website is just pages,nothing more.

Lets see,what happens tomorrow.
I don't want to get too aggressive with them,as the surveyor might just delay the dispatch order,or even the approval more. The gm of the service centre says they can't do jack.
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Old 14th October 2009, 00:01   #6
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VOW! I also happen to having bajaj-allianz insurance for my car. Tried blasting the boss of the surveyor?

Last edited by bharti22shresth : 14th October 2009 at 00:02.
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Old 14th October 2009, 00:05   #7
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So what is your next course of action?? Have you tried contacting so some snior execs from BA?

OT:Is that the Nano driven by the Yeti,that did the Mumbai - Delhi drive?

Last edited by pranava999 : 14th October 2009 at 00:07.
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Old 14th October 2009, 00:10   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smilenow View Post
I did,and the claim manager doesn't even want to take my calls now,the call centre guys are not lodging a complaint,and my car is rotting.
The claim portal on their website is not working,basically half their website is just pages,nothing more.

Lets see,what happens tomorrow.
I don't want to get too aggressive with them,as the surveyor might just delay the dispatch order,or even the approval more. The gm of the service centre says they can't do jack.
yes you have point! Good luck for tomorrow, hope things settle down fast. Service Center GM may not be able to help in this case. This is frustrating - you are right - we are just customer for them!

@mods: Isn't this post more appropriate for Insurance/Loan Section?

Last edited by kanwal : 14th October 2009 at 00:15. Reason: Added last line abt the section.
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Old 14th October 2009, 00:48   #9
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dude

Try and register a complaint against Bajaj with IRDA and see the magic.
Once I had an issue, with one of the govt insurance company. In every official written communication they gave a dead line of reply with in a week.

I was pissed off with such strict time lines, after the matter settled up, in a casual chat i learnt from the insurance company representative that there are some internal deadlines. if the insurance company misses those dead lines in settlement of claims then they have to report such cases to IRDA.

moreover, if u want to take the surveyor for his attitude, just lodge a complaint that surveyor is indirectly demanding bribe else he is sitting on the file endlessly... surveyor once blacklisted will stop getting work and he will come running to you for a written statement that he did not asked for any favors....

Please do maximum written communication, preferably fax or register AD so that u have a proof of communication… avoid telephonic conversation.. it is recorded and reproduced only once they find a fault in you… if they are in fault they will say that they record random calls for quality purposes… fax a letter of concerns over delay in approval.. 2 days later fax again... and then copy of those 2 faxes and a letter to IRDA (register AD with CC to insurance company)

ps. above mentioned tips and tricks are my learning from one of my cases. I was not required to contact IRDA, the case got solved with 2-3 well drafted letters from a lawyer friemd. Itmight or might not help you.

Standard disclaimer applies.. kindly do your due diligence before trying to do anything mentioned above. Best of luck,

Last edited by aah78 : 14th October 2009 at 04:36. Reason: Text format tags removed.
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Old 14th October 2009, 00:49   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bharti22shresth View Post
VOW! I also happen to having bajaj-allianz insurance for my car. Tried blasting the boss of the surveyor?
Tried blasting,but now he too is on the run.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pranava999 View Post
So what is your next course of action?? Have you tried contacting so some snior execs from BA?

OT:Is that the Nano driven by the Yeti,that did the Mumbai - Delhi drive?
Don't know,it had JBL stickers all around it.
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Old 14th October 2009, 01:02   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smilenow View Post
Tried blasting,but now he too is on the run.

Have you been to any of Bajaj's offices, if not try going there. Also their website has a Live chat section have you tried it out ??


Quote:
Originally Posted by smilenow View Post
Don't know,it had JBL stickers all around it.

Then this is the YETI's (Sam Kapasi's) car for sure, as its got JBL in the rear parcel tray as well.

Last edited by maglev : 14th October 2009 at 01:12.
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Old 14th October 2009, 02:06   #12
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This is horrible. I am with Maruti Insurance (National Insurance) and was planning to move to BA. I guess I'll stick with National for the time being. Plus being sarkari - worst case, some jugaad can be found out
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Old 14th October 2009, 02:24   #13
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Send a written notice to the insurance guys. Take down in writing from the dealership guys that your case is genuine. If the insurance guys don't respond, sue them. Slap them with the charges that you have to incure and for human harassment in the consumer court. I know it's a long and tiresome process but maybe they might just want to close down the case. In 2002 when our car was stolen insurance company gave us peanuts as value of the car and that too after a LONG time. My grandfather put a case in the consumer court and a month later, we had a reimbursement cheque with us.
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Old 14th October 2009, 08:19   #14
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Sorry to hear about all the horrendous experience you have been through.

My suggestion will be ,you better go to some nearest Bajaj allianz office and talk to them directly that'll really help .

Hope your problems gets solved soon
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Old 14th October 2009, 08:35   #15
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Dear Smilenow - once again I am not surprised. Let's just say I happen to know and leave it at that. My definition of "customer" is,

CUSHT SE JO MAR JAAYE USE CUSHTOMER KEHTE HAIN!

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar
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