Home > Deliberations, Random Thoughts > Notorious Petrol Bunk Attendants of Bangalore

Notorious Petrol Bunk Attendants of Bangalore

You start noticing it when all the petrol bunk attendants stop after filling in petrol for 200 rupees. This happens consistently, irrespective of if you have asked them to fill in petrol for 500 or 1000 or 1500. Magically, they always hear 200 and stop at that. When I noticed this, I thought that it was a problem with my pronunciation. Just to make sure that it was not a problem with my language, along with the English translation, I started blurting out “ek hazar” also. No luck. Then I learnt the Kannada for 1000 from a friend of mine. Next time onwards, I tried “Ondu savaru” along with the English and Hindi versions. Still no luck.

It was only after a loooong time that I realized that the problem was not with my pronunciation. The issue was not because of the fact that the attendants did not understand Hindi or English or Kannada. The issue was that I was always distracted when I was at a petrol bunk. I used to talk on the phone or talk to the person sitting next to me. I was rarely looking at the meter which showed me how much fuel was being dispensed into my car. And, the attendants used to capitalize on this and easily cheat me of my money. If they heard 200 and stopped at that, it means that I was cheated of Rs. 200.

I have had similar episodes with HP, Indian Oil and BP. I have had issues at petrol bunks across the city. The only exception to the rule has been Shell. I have never had an issue with the Shell pumps. I am not sure if it is the wise selection of staff, or the excellent training that is provided to them, but they have managed to amaze me with their service every single time.

After I realized that I have been taken for a ride umpteen number of times, I have started being more aware. I generally get out of the car and stand next to the fuel meter to ensure that I am not cheated once again. This however does not deter the attendants from making an attempt. They still try to distract you and make your head turn away from the meter. But, I stay foot and keep staring at the meter. A funny episode had happened at a HP petrol bunk near Cauvery Theatre. I had asked the guy to fill in 1500 worth of petrol. As expected, he stopped at 200 and told me so. Instead of telling him that I had wanted 1500 worth of petrol, I took out my wallet to pay him 200. When I was paying him the 200 bucks, is when the guy enquired “Aapko 1500 ka petrol chahiye tha na?” (Didn’t you want petrol for 1500?)! I was not sure how I should react!

Inspite of all this, I have never ever complained to anyone. Why? When you are and Indian dealing with state run PSU’s you know when to make a hue and cry. If the same thing had happened to me ever at Shell, I would have brought all hell down. But with the state run PSU’s we turn a blind eye. I recently visited the BP petrol bunk at Electronic City. They have taken automation as a tool to beat this. In their current generation of pumps, my credit card is inserted into the machine even before the petrol starts pumping. After dispensing the fuel when the nozzle is returned back to its place, the card is automatically charged for the amount. No human intervention. No hassles. Simple!

  1. Paramesh
    December 30, 2009 at 4:42 pm

    I have got similar experiences in petrol pumps near HAL and also towards silk board in Hosur road. Couple of attendants used to block my vision from the meter and start talking some nonsense meanwhile other attendant at petrolpump resets the meter and charge extra amount. Also in some other instances they fill petrol for one customer and continue from there without resetting the meter and charge for latest amount.

  2. Neelesh
    July 20, 2010 at 4:47 pm

    Same in Hyderabad…..

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