Monday, May 6, 2013

Connect India Thieves



There’s a website called connectindia which describes itself as “India’s biggest mobile and internet plans destination.”  They provide various services related to mobile phones and the internet connection.  I am one of the hundreds of victims of their fraud.

A certain problem in my foot had made me partly immobile when I ordered a Tata Photon Plus data card from connectindia, not suspecting in the least that it was a fraudulent company. Within a minute of entering my name and phone number in the relevant rectangles on their website I received a call from them.  They promised to deliver the data card at my residence within a couple of hours.  I thought that was what one would call excellence in service and efficiency.  I paid them instantly using my credit card. 

A couple of hours later, one connectindia thief (I find no other word for them) came to my residence and handed over the data card and a receipt.  He promised me that the card would be activated within a couple of days. 

A couple of weeks have now passed.  I have made more than 30 complaints in various forms, through their website, through email and by making them call me by placing pseudo orders at their website.  Why pseudo orders?  They never answer any phone call or email.  There’s no other way of contacting them except the single phone number they have provided in the bill and the contact form at the website.  They won’t ever answer any of these complaints. 

I googled “contactindia complaints” and found that there were about 500 complaints against this company at various portals like consumercourt.in.  Anyone can google the phrase and verify what I’m saying.

I went to a Tata Photon outlet.  They said that only connectindia could solve my problem since it is they who took the payment.  “Aren’t they mere frauds?” was my spontaneous question when the Tata man mentioned connectindia.  He looked at me indifferently and said nothing.  “So they are frauds,” I repeated.  “No,” he said indifferently again.  And too tersely to be taken seriously.

Not receiving any response to any of my complaints, I started placing pseudo orders at their website.  Their call would come within minutes.  I would narrate my complaint.  They would listen for half a minute and say something like, “It’s not my department,” and snap the call. 

One person, however, cared to promise that she would do something about it.  More than 24 hours after her promise, I’m becoming convinced that she is just another helpless cog in a big wheel of consummate fraud.

Why do hundreds of people get cheated by this company in spite of the many complaints against them?  This is the mystery that really baffles me.  Why is no action taken against this company?  How can they go on cheating people endlessly and with apparent impunity?

41 comments:

  1. That's really outrageous!fraud has become so common nowadays!

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    Replies
    1. They do it so blatantly - that's what amazes me.

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  2. Sir,
    Sorry to hear that you fell in trap of such fraud companies. Even I went through similar situation and now I am in the course of getting my payment reimbursed. http://www.pgportal.gov.in/Grievance.aspx
    Try this link, might help. I lodged a complaint with the same.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Abhinav, for that link. I've promised connectindia a good fight and will leave no stone unturned until I achieve my goal.

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  3. You place a chargeback .. if not done yet ... and teach them the practical lesson first ... and I am passing your post to all I know .. let the burglars be exposed !!
    You will get a refund in maximum 1 month .. just call up the customer service of your credit card let them know about the transaction and you have explain you want to cancel the deal !!
    I have recently taken a company for a ride .. although this is not for the first time , I have taken frauds for a ride ... hence if you think you need my assistance just mail me on indiblogger mail !!

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    1. Thanks for your suggestion. I had already placed a request for cancelling the order and refund of the money since that provision was given. But nothing happened. Let me now try what you suggest: approach the credit card provider.

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    2. yes .. CC providing bank is bound to and will cancel the transaction and you will get your money back in sometime.While this issue has to do with physical product being delivered so the procedure may require you to return the stuff and produce a receipt of the same.Under Indian Cyber Laws an Online purchase can be cancelled anytime within 180 days.

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  4. So sorry to hear this and thanks for the warning.

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  5. This is so bad attitude from the retailer. I think we should all make it a practice to check about the website before placing the order. I wonder who the management is?

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    1. It's my mistake that I didn't care to check the website before I entered into the transaction. The firm does not even have an office, it looks like. The address they have provided in the receipt does not look genuine - in some godforsaken corner of Noida.

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    2. just willing to add my suggestion,just in case,the websites addresses should be verified in google .. when we take down the address and google it keeping the address between double quotes we get search results which are specific to the addresses and give us urls which may give deeper informations.
      Well,Tomichan, I will also share a fact, most of the times the ones who have tried cheating me were having all their info on the net , everything valid .. while there have been 100s with no specific info which ended up being a good deal !
      Virtual World ...cautious steps MAY avoid pit falls !
      Hoep you get out of this mess at the earliest .

      Delete
  6. I am sorry to hear that ... but this is a eyeopener for each of us who are into purchasing consumer goods from the internet using your credit cards and debit cards without cross checking the website history and trusting them by their portfolio/overlook ! I hope that you get justice on your path !

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    Replies
    1. I'm determined to pursue this matter to its right end.

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  7. an eye opener but do teach them a story.and yes,will spread d word.

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    1. Do spread, Gunjan. This is an honest fight. And I'm going ahead. I want to see this company closed down.

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  8. 500 complaints! Hope you all succeed in dismantling this fraudulent business and making it DisconnectIndia. I guess it teaches us to check the net for reviews before we invest.

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    1. I could hear the repercussions of this post from connectindia when one of their personnel called me pathetically today... I'm sure they will be defeated. They are frauds.

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  9. This happens in India. Sorry to read about your woes.

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    1. No, Saru. I'm not worried about me. I'm worried about those people for whom the amounts paid must have been much. I'm a loner (leaving aside my wife from this commercial crassness) and can afford all this. But what about those people for whom the amounts meant much? What about those people who tried to make an online transaction for the first time in their life? What about those who don't know how to fight this out? [I have already asked my bank to cancel my payment to the dealer, thanks to mysay (above) who gave that idea. And it's working, you know.

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    2. Did it work any good ?? I am keen to know if all is fine now ?This is the best way cheaters are woken up ! When they get repeated chargebacks and cancellations of orders their merchant account will cease.

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  10. Oh God! This is absolutely horrible. Just getting your money back is not enough. I think we should teach these guys a lesson. How about going to TV media? They should be exposed on the national level.

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    1. I have lodged a complaint with http://www.pgportal.gov.in/Grievance.aspx, thanks to Abhinav (above) who suggested the site.

      This sort of swindling is so common nowadays that the media may not take any interest in it.

      Delete
  11. Frauds happening every where . This country is going to be hell unless a revolution takes place .

    Travel India

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  12. Found this link
    there is mobile number of the founder. try to contact him, don't know it its geniune or fake.
    he also owns some more sites ( see this link), we should be aware that these sites are also most probably fraud.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Yogesh. Connect India contacted me today. They've forwarded my matter to Tata and maybe in a day or two my problem will be settled - hopefully :)

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  13. Sad that you had to lose money to these fraudsters. I hope you are able to recover the amount.

    Its become tough to believe even your bankers because they too are indulging in money laundering and fraud.

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  14. thanks for writing about it...atleast it will help others not to fall into a similar trap.

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  15. The worst could be ...they took your money via your credit card and then they never appear in front of...at least you have the data card and the receipt...i know it's pointless as you cannot use your data card...but at least you have got something...have heard few people who didn't get anything in return for their money !!!

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    1. But this blog seems to have worked. Connect India contacted me finally. They are doing something to get my card activated!

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  16. But Matheikal, similar instances have been around for many years, from across many fields of trading activities. If you remember, there was this movement towards "Bundling", a comprehensive offer of hardware and software.This was supposedly to counter the pillar-to-post flitting of customers to get their computer things straightened out; if something went wrong, it was always the case the software fellow will blame hardware and vice versa in the times before "Bundling". Yet, "Bundling" did not change ground reality all that much. Personal experience, as I was involved in the procurement of the system for my office.

    Now it is between Tata and the service non-provider and payment-taker Contactindia, in your case. Much as they may change, things remain the same, in different avatars!

    RE

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    1. True, Raghuram, I too don't see any ray of hope. In spite of ConnectIndia's promise to rectify their mistake, nothing has happened so far. But I'm not going to leave them anyway.

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  17. I am shocked to see how fraud and swindling has became common in India. It is very pathetic condition for all of us.
    See more on my blog

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  18. Whether we are abroad on business or on holiday, with the USB modem for laptops in your wallet we can stay in touch with family or contact our loved ones.

    Data Cards Price

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  19. Ha! wish i had checked this post a few months back. i placed a request on Reliance's official website for a data card, and got a call from ConnecIndia. After deciding the plan i promptly made the payment. Only after a few days i came to know they had lied about the plan i was going to get. So i asked to cancel my order and refund, which they agreed to. So, i never received the card, and even after two months havent received the refund. As you mentioned, no one answers the call, email etc. And because i had made the payment via net banking, cant even cancel it. So frustrating to know that our request on Reliance's official website goes to these frauds...

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    1. Dear Vaibhav, I can understand your frustration. But let me tell you that I made ConnectIndia get my card activated. They did, though 24 days and umpteen complaints of mine later. I got my bank to question my transaction with ConnectINdia. I complained to the consumer section of http://www.pgportal.gov.in/Grievance.aspx
      Finally ConnectIndia acted. I harassed them into acting! But they had swindled Rs200 out of me anyway.

      Delete
  20. Sir thanks for enlightening us of the fraud company,i am planning to buy a data card and landed into their site,but luckily i thought of buying operator free data card and escaped them.You should have gone for operator free data card/usb modem and use a plan that suits your requirements,any how i feel sorry for whatever hurdles you have gone through.Hope your problem is solved now.If possible post a review on mouthshut.com it will help many people and also teach some lesson to fraud company.

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  21. sir,how such fraudulent companies mushrooming in absence of any govt.control...you are right in your fight.

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  22. Thanks a lot for this awareness. This is outrageous !

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