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Karnataka: Electrician Struggles With No Kannada-Speaking Service Representatives After Samsung Device Catches Fire

By: Akshara DM

News18.com

Last Updated: October 07, 2022, 15:29 IST

Karnataka, India

After the incident, Krishna got in touch with the Poorvika centre from which he had bought the phone and was assured that he would get a new device.  (Representational Image -PTI)

After the incident, Krishna got in touch with the Poorvika centre from which he had bought the phone and was assured that he would get a new device. (Representational Image -PTI)

Krishna, an electrician who purchased the phone five months ago, suffered minor burns in his attempt to douse the fire to save his phone

In yet another incident of the device malfunction, a Samsung A 22 mobile phone was left completely charred at Nelamangala in Bangalore rural, when connected for charging. Krishna, an electrician who purchased the phone five months ago, suffered minor burns in his attempt to douse the fire to save his phone. While the reason for the fire is still disputed and the company is yet to get back to him, what added more burden to Krishna’s misery was the language barrier ahead of him that he had to overcome to get his damaged set replaced.

After the incident, Krishna got in touch with the Poorvika centre from which he had bought the phone and was assured that he would get a new device. However there was a barrier, Krishna couldn’t get in touch with a Kannada-speaking Samsung customer care service representative, the only language he can converse in.

“The customer care people spoke to me in English, a language I can neither speak nor understand. I requested them to make me talk to someone who speaks Kannada but until now I have not got a single call from customer care who speaks Kannada. It will take around 30 minutes to connect with customer care, even after this delay there will be no service representative to speak in Kannada. I will be asked to call after two hours for a Kannada-speaking service representative,” said Krishna speaking to News 18. Krishna had to take help from his English-speaking friend to connect with Samsung’s customer service.

To check his claim, News 18 contacted Samsung’s toll-free helpline choosing the Kannada language as the mode of communication, only to be left with a reply saying the Kannada-speaking representatives were all occupied at the moment.

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In a third attempt, the call was connected to a service representative in Chennai, who was comfortable only with English and Telugu despite choosing Kannada as the mode of communication. The service representative disclosed that Kannada-speaking service representatives were working from the 6 am to 10 am shift and assured that a Kannada-speaking representative would get back in half an hour, which never happened.

Big brands but no customer support in the Indian language has been a big problem: Activist

Kannada activists campaigning for customer rights say this has been a major issue across many brands. Most companies offer support either in Hindi or English leaving people speaking other Indian languages in a fix despite shelling out big money for the products.

“Among the eight consumer rights, the right to be informed, right to safety and right to seek redressal are extremely important, these rights along with five other rights constitute the consumer protection Act, 1986. Customer service representatives not speaking these regional languages is a denial of all these rights.

The right to be informed along with the right to be heard is also missed by customers when a manual is not available in the regional language. The Union government has formed these rights by keeping Hindi speaking population in mind, non-Hindi speaking population are not considered as consumers. Nothing can be changed until and unless the consumer protection Act, 1986 is amended,” says Arun Javgal pointing out that an amendment is a solution to the problem.

News18.com has reached out to Samsung’s India team and is yet to get a response.

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first published:October 06, 2022, 23:52 IST
last updated:October 07, 2022, 15:29 IST