Sent To Sathyam Cinemas


Dear Manager,

I am writing to complain about a disappointing experience I had tonight at your cinema.

At around 7pm, I was at the food counter on the ground floor, waiting for my turn. A man suddenly came to the side of the woman in front of me, who was ordering and paying for her snacks, and it was clear to me he was intending to cut queue. As soon as the person before me had finished with her transaction, he cut queue and placed his order. I said to him, “Excuse me, there is a queue.” In an extremely rude manner, he claimed that I had appeared out of nowhere and that he had been in the queue all along. Not only did he profess this blatant lie, he enlisted the cashier in it, saying to him that he had surely seen him in the queue. Your cashier took his order before mine.

I made sure that I gave your extremely unprofessional cashier a piece of my mind for letting that courtesy-challenged public nuisance cut queue.

That ill-mannered and inconsiderate people exist is not the issue I am bringing up here. You have no control over that.

But what you do have control over are your employees’ responses in such situations. Your cashier was clearly aware that I was waiting in line, and that someone had not just cut in front of me but claimed he was right to do so. Your cashier chose to attend to his order first anyway, thereby not just sanctioning that boorish customer’s behaviour, but also surely allowing him to feel justified in continuing to inflict his lack of basic decency upon others.

Your cashier is an embarrassment to your company. Your cashier’s behaviour reflects badly on Sathyam Cinemas, not on him. I won’t even remember his face, but your company’s is the name I will connect to the experience.

In other words, Sathyam Cinemas encourages idiots to impinge upon the time and rights of paying customers. Is that the message you intend to send? Because that’s the one I got, loud and clear, and the one I intend to pass on to other people.

There is no point in promoting yourselves as a leisure destination when your own staff ensure that your customers have poor experiences at your cinema.

Do think about it. I, for one, will certainly think twice before I patronize your poorly-run food counters again, if not your cinema itself.


Update Aug 10: They responded yesterday. Their email and my reply in the comments section.

8 responses »

  1. What to do?when in a queue people suddenly have compelling reasons to cut the queue. We see it everywhere, on the road, in schools, in colleges, at home. We are told that we have to be first otherwise we are hopeless. So obviously we are an agressive bunch. Last time I pulled a woman who cut queue at the railway station ticket counter. Reason she gave was “I will miss the train” Bleddy Nonsense…

  2. I don’t know who is the bigger asshole? The queue-cutter or the casheir guy? Like they don’t overcharge at that stupid cinema already, they have to make customers suffer through shit like this. Go to Inox!!! They are better!!!

  3. Aravind — Yeah, am sure he would have missed his train if he had queued up. All the invisible people behind me would have kept him from getting to his goat’s funeral on time.

    Inoxfan — Never been to Inox. But I think I will, next time.

  4. Wow talk about cheap behaviour and sorry professionalism. Did they respond to you? Lifetime free tickets-ah? :D

  5. In Chennai, or even in whole Tamil Nadu Queue culture in people has to get matured. Definitely Satyam has to act on their unprofessional staff.

  6. Malini — They have not responded as yet. I doubt they will. If unprofessionalism is part of their work culture, why would they care?

    OldSailor — I’ve seen a fair bit of queue-cutting here. But I’ve never seen a cashier take the side of the person cutting queue. So yes, a special case, and one Sathyam ought to take note of.

  7. Dood! The same thing hapenned to me at Sathyam! Bloody unprofessional wankers!
    I was standing in line with the Brits and Yasser for what must have been 15 minutes when this older guy in his 30’s comes panting over and nervously toes the 1 inch of space in front of me. So I let him have his 1 inch, but as soon as the couple in front of me had ordered and shipped out, he stepped in and placed an order. I let the cashier know that I had been waiting my turn, that he should help me out first and tell this guy to get his ass into line. The response was a wide grin followed by an apologetic “But, madam, I am already getting him his items. Just wait”, finished off with a head wobble. I couldn’t even be bothered saying anything to the guy at cash because I thought “F. It’s India”. I remember Yas was telling me to “calm down” because I was fuming and lecturing the budger.
    But it’s not just the cinemas. No, people polite and smart enough to line up have to suffer at railway stations, chai wallahs, mall queus, as well. You have to get in BESIDE the person vs. the logical BEHIND because it shows that you are “with them” and eager to be served, as Suketa Mehta mentions in “Maximum City”. Nowhere else is this more true!
    On a different note, what film did you see, and was it any good?

  8. They responded.

    customer care
    date Sat, Aug 9, 2008 at 8:51 PM
    subject Reg:Feedback

    Aug 9

    Dear Sharanya Manivannan

    I personally regret for the inconvenience you had over here at Sathyam Cinemas.The particular staff was identified and necessary action has also been taken.I assure you that this kind of incidences will never occur again.

    I would like to invite you and your family back to another screening at Sathyam Cinemas so that we might have the opportunity to redeem ourselves for the substandard experience. Please contact me at your convenience and I will make the necessary arrangements.

    Once again I apologize for the poor quality of service.

    D Vijayabalan
    Assitant Manager – Food and Beverage
    Sathyam Cinemas.
    Ph :044 – 43920317 , 044 – 43920274 , 9962506299

    Dear D Vijayabalan,

    Thank you for your response.

    My complaint was simply to draw attention to something which ruins the cinema experience for customers. Thank you for your gracious offer to redeem the substandard experience I had, but it won’t be necessary. I’m just glad to know that you took my complaint seriously.


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