Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Be careful while dealing with!!

Be careful while dealing with
Please be careful while dealing with Understand all terms and conditions before you decide to make any payment to them. Avoid any credit card payment through IVR. It has been heard that the company is making exaggerated promises during their telephonic marketing calls. I have also received a call from them at least 10 times on 24/02/2014 but when I asked them to give me the promises in writing through an email , they had vanished. The first doubt was created when the caller said that whatever shopping (other than petrol,CNG etc) is done through credit card, I will have to pay only 80%. If me and family go for excursion trip, the lodging and boarding incl local travel shall be borne by the company for rest of the life. They started asking details of the credit card which I refused to share. I had spoken to the credit card issuer who confirmed of such fraudlent practices.
I am reproducing below two complaints from consumer: 

"I have been forced to get buy from sarthak deals, I had no idea that I was making payment for con deal. First people called sand said you will get good discounts on you XXX credit card if you go with deal then I was not convinced so they made me talk to many people in their office and forced me to buy deal. In that deal I had 3 day holiday package and i was told to make booking before 21 days so i made booking before 25 days and i was told by sarthak agent that ur booking will get confirmed only before 4 days of ur trip. Three days prior to my trip i called that was Saturday i was told that ur booking will be confirmed after 4 o clock ( On Saturdays they have half day work till 2:00pm) i tried calling them at 3:30pm and their no. was switched off. On day prior to my trip i was traveling to my destination cos i had booked my train tickets and i called them and they said that person who is in charge of is on leave for ten days. Then i had to pay everything for my vacation. People buying any deals from Sarthak Deals please don't buy and don't get conned. Thank you, Narendra Sharma, 9371008882" 

"I also have almost similar experience. On Saturday, I received a call, person told he is calling from my credit card company, they are going to send me a complementary discount card which can be used with my credit card to get 25% discount on every purchase and a holiday package. The service charge for which will be 6599/- for one year and then it can be continued after payment of 2500/- annual. They further asked my card no. for confirmation and I got a code from HDFC bank which confirmed I am dealing with right person. I entered my credit card information, I received a massage of payment made by my card, which was surprising. Then again received call from a lady giving the detail which was totally different from what the first guy told me. I asked her to cancel my booking because I was previously I was under impression that the call was from my bank. Whole day I was keep on receiving calls from the company trying to convince me but every time I denied. But truth was I have already made payment which cannot be reimbursed without their desire. Today morning I received confirmation mail about the payment. From the domain name of the mail id I searched for the company name and address and also the complaint against it. I found your mail. I request you lets launch police complaint against this company then only they will stop fooling people. 
Dr. Rekha Singh 
9999019697 "

Monday, February 17, 2014

If bargaining at MRP makes you sure of buying products at best prices?

If bargaining at MRP makes you sure of buying products at best prices?

Every product is supposed to be sold with MRP printed on the products or its packing. MRP is a price that retailer can sell at its maximum which includes VAT/Taxes, packing, transportation and any other additional charges. Selling any product more than printed MRP is illegal. In fact it is always adviseable to bargain and negotiate the prices less than MRP.

There are certain category of products where the MRP is very exaggerated even to the tune of 100%. The traders have been announcing the scheme buy 1 and get 2 free etc. etc. The readymade garments is a glaring example. Now the question is if the companies can announce a discount of 50-60% and I am quite sure they must be making profit of around 15-20%. If we assume they are not making any profit during the discount season that means they may be making heavy profits when they are selling products at their MRP. The question now arises do the customer believe or be sure that he/she purchased the product at the right price. To what extent the prices could be bargained. It is also a fact that now a days the selling has changed its concept from off season discount to all the 12 months discount. 

Why there should not be a mechanism which can give confidence to the buyers of having purchased at the right price. The category of the item that I thought of having very high profit margins and MRPs are exaggerated disproportionately (unimagineable):
1. Ready made garments
2. Hardware and sanitary ware items
3. Unbranded items
4. Furniture items
5. Electronic and computer hardware items
6. Stationary Items
7. Suit cases and bags
8. Crockery items
9. Automobile spare parts
10. Mobile handset
11. Purses/ Belts
12. Shoes
13. Decorative items and home furnishings
14. Medicines and life saving drugs and instruments

Monday, February 10, 2014

Can CIC be biased? Is it possible?

 Can CIC be biased? Is it possible?

I have been raising a RTI since last more than two years against Delhi Police. Delhi Police have been supplying false information and some of the crucial information which could have substantiated the claims of a possible nexus, have been suppressed by Delhi Police. There was a hearing before CIC (Chief Information Commission) wherein I could beyond reasonable doubt prove that Delhi Police is supplying false information and have been suppressing information of crucial nature. I concluded my view point with a request to direct Delhi Police to state the facts on an affidavit. Delhi Police refused to supply the statement of information on Affidavit.  Surprisingly the CIC order does not specify such request made by me as an Appellant. What could be the reason of suppression of such statements of the Appellant by CIC. Could it be possible CIC being biased. I do not believe but it is also a fact that it is a real based factual statement of mine. I am planning to bring details of my RTI application, PIO responses and CIC orders viz.-a- viz appeal before CIC on a public domain so that the public who is a stakeholder in RTI can analyse the impact of Right to Information Act 2005. 

Why VAT being charged by Aditya Birla Nuvo on discounted MRP when MRP is inclusive of all taxes?

Why VAT being charged by Aditya Birla Nuvo on discounted MRP when MRP is inclusive of all taxes?

A copy of the e-mail sent to Aditya Birla Nuvo Ltd. on alleged unethical additional charging of VAT on the discounted price as the MRP is supposed to be inclusive of all taxes and any discount offered on MRP also becomes inclusive of VAT/taxes.

Dear Sir,

We have been receiving complaints from the consumers who have been shopping at your outlets at Connaught Place, New Delhi and Chandigarh stating that the outlets are charging VAT extra on the discounted prices.

As you would appreciate that the MRP are inclusive of all taxes and VAT and no additional amount of whatsoever nature is chargeable. When the off season discounts have been offered on MRP the discounted prices becomes discounted MRP and in our view no additional amount is chargeable. To explain with illustration if the MRP of any product say is Rs.2,000/- inclusive of all taxes and a sale discount has been mentioned as 50%, the prices as perceived as well as ethically becomes Rs. 1,000/- of inclusive of all taxes. Charging additionally VAT on Rs. 1,000/- becomes unethical/unfair as the price of Rs. 1,000/- includes element of VAT/Taxes etc. You are requested to kindly let us have your opinion so as to issue consumer advisory accordingly. 

We shall be grateful for your feedback by return mail with a request to issue advises to your outlets accordingly under intimation to us. Not getting any response to the mail would substantiate the allegation as unethical business practices.

Best Regards

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Is Ritu Wears adapting to ethical business Practices? probably "No".

Is "Ritu Wears" adapting to Ethical Business Practices? probably "No".

This is a snap taken at "Ritu Wears" Faridabad who have announced off season sale discounts. A discount of 30% to 60% is being offered. The MRP of products is also displayed and MRP is a price inclusive of all taxes, VAT etc. Now when the discount on MRP is offered, the discounted price becomes MRP implying that the discounted price is also inclusive of taxes, VAT etc. As can be seen that Ritu Wears after discount is also charging VAT extra. The charging of extra VAT is an unfair trade practices as the price after charging VAT becomes expensive to the extent of VAT which in most of the items is 12.5%. 

This means the price where the discount has been displayed as 50% makes effective discount to be 43.25% instead of 50% which is unfair trade practices as well as misleading selling. 

Let me take another example. Say the company has announced 10% discount in the off season sales. With the announcement as above, the company would give a discount of 10% and after giving a discount will add VAT @12.5% which would make the price more than MRP. But no one can sell at a price more than MRP. 

 I suggest consumers to be vigilant and report such matters to the concerned agencies like Legal Metrology, Trade/Sales Tax department as well as ASCI as the display of discount is misleading. I would also seek consumers opinion/experiences on such practices as well as advise of CAs/Tax Consultants.

Is EVOK resorting to Unethical Business Practices?

Is EVOK, Crown Interiorz, Faridabad resorting to unethical business practices?

EVOK also seems to be resorting to unfair trade practice (UTP). 

I had a chance of visiting the store yesterday i.e on 8th Feb.2014 at Faridabad. It has displayed everywhere in the show room including newspaper a discount upto 60%.

The sales boy had stated a discount of 15% on MRP on some particular item which was sent for billing. However, at the billing counter, surprisingly the cashier did not account for the offered discount. This was noticed only after payment of money by credit card completed. However the issue was raised. The cashier confirmed from the sales boy as to whether any 15% discount was offered on the item. The sales man confirmed and despite that the cashier did not corrected the bill. The cashier was asked to share the email id of the concerned senior official so that the issue is raised appropriately. The cashier refused to share the email id. Surprisingly the web-site of EVOK does not contain email id of customer care other than a form which has been filled up with the comment "

Shall be grateful if you could provide the email id to forward the link of the post being posted on public domain about unethical business practices by EVOK". If the email id is received, the post shall be forwarded to EVOK through email so that the EVOK has a chance to defend their practices. The response if received from EVOK would be updated in the subsequent post.
Having no other option at the stores where you are accompanied with your spouse, a feedback form was filled up and dropped in the drop box. Lets wait if there is any impact of the feedback form or it is just a show-off business to befool the customers. I will definitely update if there is any ethical handling of the issue. The details of the cash Memo no. is 0160001021 dtd. 08/02/2014.
In my view the behavior of EVOK is in no way better than any any tom beacon and harry business man. If the EVOK has any sense of fair business practice, it may consider refunding the extra money charged.This post is also being forwarded to the trader at email id

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Is it adviseable to buy products whose manufacturer consider details of their customer care as confidential?

Is it adviseable to buy products whose manufacturer/trader consider details of their customer care as confidential?

"We had contacted the Olympus Imaging India for their Cameras at 022-61420400 to  know details of customer care contact like Customer care number, name and address of the  head of the customer care for advise to consumers in case they feel any problem with the product . The person had refused to provide the details on the pretext that such information  is highly confidential and surprisingly said he is speaking from London. I have never heard any person who has been contacted telephonically in Mumbai can physically talk from London. 

Another revealing fact is that if the company treats the customer care contact details confidential why should any person buy their product. What would be the treatment to the customer post sales if he faces any problem with the product and how he would get redressal to his complaint. The best way is to purchase the product of those companies  who are willing to share details else boycott irrespective of how much they are cheaper."