Openly robbing the customer

I had a particular problem on my prepaid Vodafone connection. I lodged a complaint on the Consumer Online Resource & Empowerment Centre. The complaint in itself is definitive of the whole case and conveys the point I want to make. So, I have pasted the exact complaint that I have posted on CORE’s website.

Given below is the complaint:

Title : Unauthorised Charge for Caller Tunes
Complaint ID : xxxxx
Complaint Details : I am subscribed to a Vodafone Prepaid Mobile
connection with the number 9xxxxxxxxx

Automatic incoming calls from Mobile Service Providers is a norm. One type
of such calls was missed by me on the morning of 09/03/2009. These numbers
are normal 10 digit mobile numbers and not distinguishable as promotional
calls.

I called back the number. I was told by the IVR its a free call. I
realised it was a call for Caller Tunes. Incidentally, I had been planning
to activate it around that time. So I thought of going through the options
of songs available.

I was listening to the songs on the Bollywood menu I had entered by
pressing the specified key.
After the songs in that menu exhausted(I had not pressed any key
indicating selection of song), I was asked whether Caller Tunes was
already activated for me. 1 for Yes. 2 for No. I pressed 2. Suddenly the
system tells me that the caller tune had been set. After disconnection of
the call I received their sms’.
I was charged Rs. 45 in an unauthorised fashion, without my consent.

I called up their Customer Care twice on that day. They heard me out and
said we’ll transfer your call. And in that process the line disconnected.

Today, I had called them up again & the call was eventually
transferred to one of their special CC executives.

I explained the whole thing to her & told them to reverse Rs. 15 &
I would change my caller tune to one of my choice.
She told me that what I said was valid, but they didn’t have any procedure
to reverse it if I had called in the number, and even if I visited their
Gallery, it wouldn’t be reversed. Only it had got activated on the
incoming call & not the outgoing call would have it been reversed.

Consequences:

The amount is small here, but the concern here is the
(maybe intentional) glitch in their system, which must be charging all the
users without consent. Most users think it is a small amount and let it
be, but with these drops they making an ocean of unauthorised revenue at
the cost of their customers. I would call this openly robbing the
consumers.

It would be great to have an explanation from Vodafone about the fact that
their systems are prepared or programmed to rob us, but when one of us
realises we’ve been robbed, they say there is no procedure(or their
systems arent programmed to reverse this amount). WHY?
And first of all, WHY should such a major glitch be existing in their
software.

Moreover, there is a small issue with the CORE website as well which I wanted to blog about right away alongwith this.

Today is 03/11/2009(11th of March, 2009) & I lodged the complaint at around 5 PM. Look at the snapshots below and they should be enough to convey what I want to say.

CORE Email Snapshot
CORE Email Snapshot
CORE Snapshot
CORE Snapshot