When you shouldnt just trust people

Last year around August I decided to take a 3 days break from work. Anousha and Rajeshwari had never seen dolphins jump, so I thought i will take them to Dapoli.  This trip through the difficult ghats necessitated that our Swift is in top shape. I took it to MyCar, Wakad ( Maruti authorized service center). As usual , the service adviser after inspection suggested that I get anti corrosion treatment on underside and polymer treatment done. I said, ” Just do the annual service and push back the car to me, I donot want anything more than Rs 8000/= annual service “. in fact running a startup , I just didnt have aukat to spend beyond 9K    He was disappointed.  I was in  a conference the whole day and  told Rajeshwari to correspond. Do not yield to technician beyond agreed service, I had clearly said.

Late in the afternoon, Rajeshwari told me, this guy from my Car had called up and said , “Madam , clutch plate gayi, badalni padegi 12 hazaar aur lagenge ( We have to change the clutch plate, it would cost Rs 12K more “. She was confused and worried. This was more than 2x of what was agreed and instructed. She asked me if we should allow him to go ahead. I guess she didnt want the small vacation to get jeopardized by car breakdown.  I had handled automotive section in IAF for 5 yrs and knew how technicians make an ASS of you by quoting clutch plate failures.  I told her that tell the guy to just bugger off and do what is approved and instructed by me.

Late at 9 pm , I went to collect my car. The service adviser was summoned. I asked if he has touched the clutch plate. He said NO. I said  get in the car and drive it around.  It did move up and down the inclines and the flyover without much effort. I told him , now do you know why I didnt allow clutch plate to be changed, the clutch plate was changed just  5000 km earlier and a year back. It has a life of 30, 000 Km and I have been driving it.  The guy was flummoxed but tried to freak me off. “Sir! family ko le kar ghaaton mein jaa rahe ho… Clutch plate ki life nahi hoti 1 km mein be ghas jaati hai… Crane break down service ka number le kar jaana ( YOu are taking your family into a hilly terrain, please take the breakdown service number along) “. It did generate some doubts in my mind but I had already realized that the man was not trust-able.

We went to Dapoli, through Tamhini ghat ( One of the most dangerous hills ) where the roads were really putrid.  In 6 hours we were at Dapoli and had one of the best beach holidays.  On return we lost our way near Mahabaleshwar and took a mighty wrong turn. It was hills and steep winding hills all over.

Mighty Tamhini
Mighty Tamhini

We were going so high up on the Western ghats that at times we were praying for our own safety. Swift however never disappointed.  It was like a beast up on the cliffs giving me all the control I wanted. So we came back from one of the toughest drives ever.

1 year and 2 months have passed since that vacation, the car just drives perfect.

What do you now think of the myCar service adviser ?
Did I do any thing wrong in not giving approval for changing clutch plate ?
Why is this story relevant today ?

Replace this service adviser with your Society management committee.  You give them approval of Rs x in AGM.  You trust them just as you trust the service adviser of your reputed car brand.  You give them  privilege to run your society and a decent mandate to spend.

How would you treat this service adviser if he didnt ask you at all and changed the clutch plate ( Spending without approval ) .  How would you treat him if he not only tells you that you pay for clutch plate ( 12,000 extra) but also tells you that  he has changed all brake shoes ( Pay 10,000 extra) . What if he in his great wisdom decided to change gear box and said he will recover it 20,000 from you with tax. When you expected to pay only 8,000/=  he is billing you  8+12+10+20 = 50K. All this without you being informed.   Worst is , if you do not understand your  car, you wont even know whether clutch plate, brake shoes and gearbox  have been replaced at all.

Cleverly he can put any other car’s faulty clutch plates and brake shoes in your bootspace. If you are gullible , you will believe all these lies and pay through your nose but believe me, you have been robbed in broad day light.

Now i tell you what my society guys did in intercom ( Spent 5.65 lakhs as against approval of 3.0 lakhs)  on CCTV system ( spent Rs 2.75 lakhs against approval of 75K ).

I have nothing to hide

Atleast the service adviser had honesty to call Rajeshwari to seek approval but these guys didnt. They were arrogant and said we will justify our overspending by splitting expenses. Splitting the prices can fool some people but how do you fool your own conscience.  How do you fool the people who know these dirty tricks . See split of expenses blog

I have written this post because many members in society have been totally confused and misguided by the craftiness with which crimes have been creatively accounted with help of a CA ( Using our money again ) . Please observe the wickedness with which the split has been done in 3 parts where each part of over spending is sexily kissing the 1 lakh limit ( Approval limit of MC).   Only Mr Kapil Sibal knows it better how to make 2G SCAM from 1.76 lakh crore to ZERO loss

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