Nightmarish Product Services: Suffering Indian Consumers

Last week when Mr. Rai was narrating the story of the amount of trouble he faced with the repair of their Sony TV, I couldn’t appreciate it. When Grover of my neighbourhood enquired if I knew someone who could repair his LG TV, I suggested him not to take the risk and opt only for the manufacturer’s service. In both cases, the response of the company’s servicing facilities and persons had been nightmarish. They neither knew the job nor were they courteous with the customers or sincere enough in providing the services promptly. After all, retired oldies can hardly afford keeping multiple TVs in house particularly with the high monthly burden of cable or DTH companies for multiple sets.

I appreciate it better today when we are without our Samsung LCD TV since last Friday night when I couldn’t get my set ‘on’ after coming back from our after-dinner short walk. Yamuna was missing her pet ‘Rakhi ka Swayambar’, and I could not update the way Hillary was charming the Indian leadership and the people she met.

Next day I didn’t even allow my electronics repair man who as otherwise regularly maintains other gadgets in the house, to even touch the TV because of the possible complexity that the manufacturer might have created for any misadventure of the amateur technician.

I went through Samsung call centre and kept on waiting for the whole of Saturday. The man informed of his arrival only at 9PM through his cell phone standing in front of our house. We had locked the gates and doors by that time. Though we cursed him first, but then with a hope of getting a quick fix and possibility of seeing our favourite serials, we welcomed him.

Unfortunately, we were not lucky. The damage according to him required the change of supply board that he didn’t have with him. As the next day was Sunday, a holiday, he promised to get the part as the first thing on Monday and fix the trouble by noon. Yamuna and me requested and prayed frantically but he couldn’t help and left us with only a promise.

Today was the Monday, which has come after a real long Sunday in absence of TV. Fortunately for us, Golu and his father came in on Sunday after completing the formalities at IIT, Delhi and I got engaged with his part of the story of his getting into IIT. Golu is really cute. I saw him after long time. But I shall tell his story in the next entry.

After Golu and his father left for IIT, Delhi today and I got some free time after taking Yamuna to the temple for the special Monday visit, I contacted the Samsung TV technician, Khurshid who was good enough to leave his cell phone number on Friday before leaving. And after talking to him, my nightmare deepened. Khurshid was in hospital with his wife and couldn’t come. He gave the cell number of his supervisor. But that gentleman had smartly kept his phone off. I kept on cursing every possible person and system of this great country while keeping on calling the Samsung call centre, its servicing agency and Khurshid’s seniors one by one as advised by the phone receivers whom I could get in the process. It went on for hours. And ultimately, I had to surrender to the system. Vijay, the boss of Khurshid informed that he could get it fixed only tomorrow as he hopes to get the parts by tonight. This was after I had talked to Rijvi, the manager of the service centre. And who knows if my TV would get fixed up tomorrow and we shall be back to normal, as Vijay had advised me earlier before I had talked to his boss Rijvi to wait till next Saturday.

Should these companies not improve the services? Or do they think the standard is good enough for the country, as the customers can’t harm them after once they have bought the appliances? Unfortunately, there are hardly any agencies that keep on rating these companies for their after-sales services to help the prospective customers. That would have certainly helped. I wish some entrepreneur takes a step in this direction.

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