On 23rd of January, I applied for a new Idea postpaid connection and minutes later, I was given a new SIM card. I was told that it will take around 24 hours for the SIM to get activated. Next day morning when I checked, the SIM was inactive (Yes, I rebooted my phone). I thought let me call Idea customer care to check why it is not activated and what the current status is. I got the number ‘9844012345’ from ideacellular.com and I gave the call, selected option ‘2’ for English and then ‘9’ to speak with a customer care executive and here is the conversation:
CCE: <something in kannada>
me: (in English) I subscribed for new postpaid connection and the SIM is not activated yet.
CCE: Sir, this is prepaid ccare number. call 9844012345
me: thank you (I forgot that this is the same number to which I placed a call)
I quickly dialed the number 9844012345 (again) and here’s the conversation. The executive name is ‘meenakshi’
Meenakshi: <usual greeting>
me: I subscribed for new postpaid connection and the SIM is not activated yet.
Meenakshi: Sir, this is prepaid ccare number. call 9844012345
me: that is the number to which I have called
Meenakshi: Sir, selection option postpaid
me: There is no such option
Meenakshi: Sir, call from your Idea postpaid number
me: How can I call using a SIM that is not activated yet.
Meenakshi: Sir, call to this number 9844012345. you have called to prepaid customer care
me: how many times should I tell you this is the number to which I called
Meenakshi: Sir, you have to select postpaid option
me: (literally shouting this time) THERE IS NO SUCH OPTION
me: Why aren’t you even asking for the new mobile number that I was provided by your exec as my postpaid number?
Meenakshi: Sir, you have to wait for 24 hours for activation
me: It’s past 24 hours. That is why I called
Meenakshi: Sir, it takes 24 hours for activation.
me: I got the SIM yesterday morning. It’s past 24 hours.
Meenakshi: Sir, go to nearest Idea outlet. they will help you
me: so, whats the use of customer care then.
Meenakshi: Sir, you have to call to 9844012345. This is pre paid ccare. you have to call postpaid ccare
me: looks like you are not at all helpful. let me raise a complaint against you (and hung up)
Do note that never did she ask for the new Idea mobile number so that she can look up in the database. I thought I will be third time lucky and so, I called to 9844012345 again. This time a guy named Pavan took the call. I thought it is better to give the new number right away so that they can check the detail the moment he start the conversation.
Pavan: <blabbering in some unknown language> (looks like I woke him up from sleep or maybe he just finished few pegs of cheap liquor)
Pavan: <continues saying something in some unknown language which am sure is not kannada/english/hindi/tamil/telugu)
me: not able to understand what you are saying
Pavan: Hi sir, my name is Pavan. How can I help.
me: I took a new connection. Number is 87229…
Pavan: Okay sir. 9886 then?
me: no. not 9886. it’s 87229..
Pavan: okay 998722…
me: there is no 99. I never said 99. its 87229…..
Pavan: Okay sir. let me check the detail.
me: Thank you
Pavan: Sir, the number is not yet registered in the database. Please wait for another 24 hours
me: Thank you.
I can only say ‘Kya customer care sir jee’!
Called the person who gave me the new connection on 24th afternoon and I was told that the SIM will be activated by evening (didn’t even ask who I am , which is the number that I took). Come 25th morning, SIM was inactive, call to the number says ‘this number does not exist’. So, I called him again. This time I told him that I took the number two days ago and it is not activated. In response, he took the new number and told me that he will check and let me know.
The following was the ‘Direct Message’ from ideacellular twitter handle that I recieved on 25th morning:
We have forwarded your concern to our team. We shall get back to you at the earliest.
Your Token # 305IC4026
I got a call asking some questions few hours later. Also, when I called the person (again) who gave me the SIM card, I was told that the connection will be active by evening. I waited till 7pm and so decided to call to idea customer care again and here is the conversation (as usual I selected option 2 for english):
ccare: <something in kannada>
me: I opted for english as conversation language
ccare: okay. how can I help
me: can you give me the status of 305IC4026.
ccare: okay 30556…
me: no. it’s 305, I as in India, C as in Chair or China, 4026
ccare: (speaking as if I asked to rob his girl friend) Sir, I want the full request number.
me: yes, that is the full request number 305IC4026
ccare: that is not a valid request number. do you want help for the number you are calling from
me: no. i requested for a new connection day before yesterday. it’s not activated yet. I was given this number by your representative who handles requests via twitter.
ccare: sir, this request number is wrong. give me the number for which you are facing problem.
and the call gets disconnected
I take a look at the display and it says ‘connection error’. I almost loudly shouted ‘F you vodafone’ 😀
So, in short, its the end of third day and the SIM is not yet activated.