Airtel — Paying to Stop Unasked Service

3 Reviews
 Krish Dharmarajan on Oct 14, 2011
Unasked Service & Paying to Stop It!
An Open Letter to TRAI

As a consumer of Airtel Mobile [No [protected]], I have a serious complaint to make against the company. I’ve good reason to believe thousands of other consumers also suffer this nagging problem, as I do. Let me make bold, therefore, to write this open letter to TRAI, in the expectation the telecom regulator will take steps to end a thriving unethical practice in the telecom industry.

By a SMS message to customers on Oct 10, the company put through a Live Aarti service, unilaterally. And to make it seem as if the customer had asked for it, the message said ‘Thank you for subscribing’ ...I myself knew nothing about it beforehand. What’s more outrageous, it made it known I had been charged Rs 10 for 7 days… a quiet debit from the pre-paid account I keep with the company. For argument sake, I could stop the service by calling 552230, but it was just that I found no such STOP option when I phoned that number.

I am not persuaded that a customer any where should pay for what he has not asked to buy. Can a shop in our neighbourhood get away in a case of this kind? In the event, it’s an unfair business practice that doesn’t behove the country’s leading mobile service provider, to say the least.

As they’ll tell you when you phone 552230 at Airtel, the service on offer has to do with Aarti from Shri Tirupati Balaji and several other renowned temples in the country. The devotees are encouraged to seek blessings by performing the Aarti . A multilingual service, it clearly targets lakhs of people across the country. Small payments add up to a huge kitty. A thriving big business in the name of God!

It’s no one-time payment, either. ‘Tirupati Live Service will be renewed in 3 days,’ a curt Airtel SMS advised me today. ‘You’ll be charged Rs.10 for 7 days.’ Elsewhere in these columns, I’ve taken up this matter twice [see Debit against Unasked Service & Charging for an Unsubscribed Service]. No way out. I was trapped without an exit option. Almost. However, after considerable effort and a good Rs.10.50 in STD outgo, I was able finally to get Airtel’s Karnataka Helpline to stop the unsubscribed service.

What about others who are similarly saddled with one or another kind of unasked programme?

14 Oct 2011
Complaint comments  2 Comments     Updated: Share0Tweet0Share0


Airtel — unasked for service

Dear sirs,

I am prepaid mobile uuser. My mobile no is [protected].

I have received a message stating that Mobile office settings have been delivered to my phone without my knowledge. It is mentioned that by long pressing '0' key, mobile videos can be browsed and downloaded. I am not interested in the offer. But I am disabled to rply to reject the offer, thereby forcing me to accept.

Although I do not want to use that service, it is possible that I may have to use the '0' key, and pressing it for long for other purposes. This will be treated as enough reason to recover unreasonable charges from me out of my prepaid balance.

I feel this is not only harrasing but also cheating by the Service provider . I request you to please direct the service provider to remove the unasked for service and also take necessary action to prevent such malafide actions by the service provider

yours faithfully


This is the third time I am complaining... I never subscribed to the Gurukul Service, but your Airtel is deducting amount of 30/- per month from my no. [protected]. Its been 2 years of activation of this service means 720/- has been deducted from my phone balance till now of no reason!!!
Many times I typed STOP and sended to 121 to check the service subscribed by me but I came to know that there is no service active in my number... so why this service is not shown in the list of subscribed service if money is deducting???????

I am amazed to see the working of an organization like yours. I was not expecting this kind of service & experience from AIRTEL. It is really hopeless and shameful.
Please look into the matter, stop the service and return the money asap...

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    Airtel - Paying to Stop Unasked Service