Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Unsolicited calls

I was in the office. I got a call on my mobile from an unknown number. A young lady was on the opposite side of the phone.
- Sir, may I talk to Mr. Roy?
- Ya, talking.
- Sir I am calling from ... Bank, do you use any credit card, sir?
- Where from did you get my number?
- Sir, I have a database with me.
- Where from did you get the database?
- Sorry sir, what?
- Where from did you get the database with my number?
- I got it from the office, sir. My boss gave it. Do you use any credit card, sir?
- Well, eventually, I do. But tell me some thing. What is your name?
- ...
- Ok, which bank are you representing?
- Sir, ... Bank.
- And what is the name of your boss?
- Sir, but sir, why are you asking these?
- I am just inquisitive about the database with my personal mobile number!
- Sir, I got the database from my boss.
I hear her voice cracking. There was a break. She talks to somebody, another lady's voice replies, 'Cut the phone yaar'. Some more noises come through the earpiece. I talk to mouthpiece, 'Hello!'
- Yes sir?
- Can you tell me the name of your boss, from whom you got the database?
- Sir I got it from my manager.
- Yes, tell me the name of the manager.
- But sir, why are you enquiring all these?
- Because you called me in my personal number. I don't want any unsolicited calls at this number. This supposedly a personal number and that is why I want to know how did you get my number!
- But sir, we have database sir!
- Yes, I know that. That is why I want to know the name of your boss, who gave you the database. Do you know, yesterday the High Court has imposed a fine of Rs. 50 Lakhs for these kind of unsolicited calls from a certain Bank?
I can feel the moisture in her voice. She is about to cry. She, I presume got worried about her job.
- OK, Miss ..., you personally have nothing to do with the fine. But certainly your boss might have to! OK?
- OK sir.
- Please convey this message to your boss. OK?
- OK Sir.
She seems sobbing. I cut the phone.

That lady is a poor call center lady. She has, as a matter of fact, nothing to do with all these unsolicited calls. Only thing is that she is ordered to gather all potential customers. This policy of direct marketing is the culprit. Its irritating. And the judgement from the High Court is very very just. In the judgment a fine of Rs. 50 Lakhs has been imposed on the bank and the cellular service provider. It is a great decision.

But eventually the call I got was from a bank whose credit card I have already applied for and got sanctioned. But due to my absense at station the courier couldn't deliver it. It got returned to the head office of the bank. But I have started recieving my bills! May be the call was regarding any information on that issue! Was I too impulsive? But then why should she ask whether I use any credit card or not?

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