New Delhi, June 18: While trying to please an upset customer, telecommunications major Bharti Airtel managed to make many others very angry. All the company had done was succumbing to a customer’s request for a ‘Hindu customer service representative’ to speak to as she couldn’t trust a Muslim executive’s ‘working ethics’. Pooja Singh, a Lucknow resident, took to Twitter to complain about Airtel’s poor DTH service. She claimed that when she called for reinstallation of DTH service, the company’s service engineer was extremely rude to her. The company responded fast, though its only fault was that an unsuspecting Muslim customer care executive replied to Singh’s complaint. Shoaib cheerily assured Singh that they were looking into her complaint and would get back soon. At which, Singh said: “Dear Shohaib, as you’re a Muslim and I have no faith in your working ethics because Kuran may have different version for customer service, thus requesting you to assign a Hindu representative for my request. Thanks.”
The customer care service took its job so seriously that they had another executive, this time a Gaganjot, respond to Singh. In no time, Twitterati was trolling Airtel for giving in to such Islamophobia. In a few hours, the company got back with a more restrained response. Bharti Airtel wrote back to Singh saying, “Dear Pooja, at Airtel, we absolutely do not differentiate between customers, employees and partners on the basis of caste or religion. We would urge you to do the same. Both Shoaib and Gaganjot are part of our customer resolution team.” But by then, the damage was done. Many Airtel customers protested over such a timid response to Singh. Quite a few claimed they were either porting their Airtel number or discontinuing their Airtel DTH or broadband service. Noted among such was former J-K chief minister Omar Abdullah said, “I hope she gets a 16 hour Air India flight with an all Muslim flight crew. She can spend the flight screaming about their “work ethic” while trying to jump out.”
He even went on to cancel his Airtel DTH and Broadband and also began the process of porting his number to another service provider.