An interesting ‘encounter’ with SBI Credit Card Agent

This happened about an year ago. Just recalled it while posting a message on the unsolicited call post on ‘Do Not Call‘ registry.

One interesting afternoon, after a bit of heavy lunch, I was feeling sleepy. Tring Tring, Tring Tring — my mobile was ringing. Here onwards by giving like a conversational style.

Day 1 (afternoon)

Me: Hello
Party: I am Arthi [name changed for privacy reasons], calling on behalf of ABN amro Bank. We are giving credit cards. (She explains the full offer on credit card)
Me: Is it lifetime free?
Party: No sir. First year free. You can give a try.
Me: I don’t want. Sorry and thanks for the offer.
Party: My friend is SBI Card Agent. Can I ask him to call you?
Me: <after thinking, since I thought SBI Card should be good>Fine. Go ahead.

Day 2:

Tring Tring Tring Tring

Me: Hello
Party: One second sir.
(Call conferencing in progress)
Party (1): Sir. My SBI Card friend is here. He would come and meet you today.
Party (2): Sir. Tell me your address.
Me: <tells the address>. When are you coming?
Party (2): Is this near <YYYY>? I am coming at 2 PM.
Me: Fine

Day 2 (afternoon)

3.30 (Tring Tring Tring Tring)

Me: Hello
Party: I am at the reception.
Me: You are behind schedule by one and half hours. At least, you could have given your number or informed me.
Party: (arrogantly) I have three customers to meet en route.
Me: (Huff) Fine. Give me the forms. Life time free, confirmed, hi na?
Party: (starts filling it. Illegible handwriting. Scores of overwriting.)
Me: Hello. I would prefer myself filling it out, legibly and clearly.
Party: (Huff. Gives a fresh form). Shall I come tomorrow? Gimme one photo, front and back of credit card.
Me: (scrutinize the form). Photo ok. No card copies please. Sorry. Payslip OK, in lieu of that.
Party: (scratches the head). Fine.

Day 3:
Tring Tring Tring Tring

Me: Hello
Party: I am at the reception. My supervisor wants only card photocopy. He does not want payslip etc.
Me: I have a canceled Citibank credit card in my drawer. If this is only for your reference, I can give you that string out CVV2 and other details with an endorsement that “This card is canceled. This photocopy is purely for verification purposes and has no financial values whatsoever”. Is that ok?
Party: (scratches the head) Fine.

[We go to the opposite xerox shop]

Me: <endorsements done>
Party: No. No. Don’t do that. Then card will not be issued.
Me: But you agreed right.
Party: Yes. But then, my manager will shout.
Me: I don’t care. But I want an absolute transparency.
Party: <calls his manager. Again emphasizes on no endorsements> I have photocopies of card of TVS Group Manager. They have credit cards worth of 4 lakhs. Why are you so stingy for a 20 K limit credit card?
Me: Never mind. This is how a transparency would be. If your agency does shady things, <I tear the photocopy into pieces and throw it into the dustbin nearby> I don’t need your services.
Party: (Huff. Keeps barking for a while and runs away on his two wheeler>

Day 7 (after 4 days gap)

Tring Tring Tring Tring

Me: Hello
Party: This is Suresh Kumar, from BankCard, Chennai. My representative told me that you have not given the card copy.
Me: I have denied him there and I can not give you card copy, breaking the security of the credit card.
Party: Thatz how I give credit cards. There is’nt much risk. I have large number of contacts and credit commitee of GE SBI. So I can give you a comfortable credit limit.
Me: I am not comfortable. Sorry.
Party: <Huff. Keeps the phone with a big thud>

Salient Features:

  • I have tried to keep the discussion or conversation as brief as possible to achieve two things — Brevity of the discussion and as well not to dilute the essence of the message to be conveyed.
  • Chennai has a very ugly practice of Card on Card. I really don’t know which elite gentleman brought out this style. It is highly dangerous to exchange a card since anyone can play havoc on it, to his extreme fantasies.