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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Chp 316. Of guile and betrayal.

Looks like this week is going to be a bad one. It’s been raining nonstop since yesterday. And yesterday when I reached office (completely drenched) there was one really shocking news lying in store for me – somebody that I’ve trusted for the past two years, was wanted by the cops!

Dr. Shilpa Kiran Bhandare ZAF Club is one of the more renowned gyms in and around Mumbai. I even blogged about becoming a member of this gym before, and that I would reduce my tummy in three months. One of those silly things you say when you’re pumped up with testosterone, I guess.

The membership fee is at a discounted rate of just 12 thousand per annum for people in our office since we share the same building, which is like a really good bargain for us considering this is Mumbai (everything high priced) and that it is really convenient because it’s just one floor below our office.

Every morning, for the past two years, I would pass the gym reception and a smiling Dr. Shilpa was always there to greet me. We soon became friends and she would counsel me on the food that I should eat and avoid, a personalized healthy diet plan etc etc. Eventually, I enrolled in the gym.

And now she is wanted by the cops, and I am one of the many victims of her charm and charisma.

You see, when I enrolled and paid her the 12K, she didn’t give me a receipt.

I didn’t ask her for a receipt because I’ve known her so well and we both work in the same building. Plus I got my membership card immediately including a registration on the electronic fingerprint lock.

Yeah I know what you’re thinking. I’m a big sucker right? How could anyone pay 12K without taking any receipt?

Well, at least I know I’m not the only sucker in town. Seems she’s been pulling this scam off for a long time now – befriending people and earning their trust, and then pocketing their membership fees without entering it in the books. That was her modus operandi. Unofficial gossips in the massage room say she’s pocketed more than 80 lakhs!!!!

Whoah. Easy money.

It seems the gym management started suspecting something was wrong when more and more people started turning up at the gym while there weren’t that many members registered.

Yesterday, all of us who didn’t get a receipt from Dr. Shilpa had to submit our membership cards for police investigation. This morning I spoke to the gym management and they assured me I will get my membership card back and nothing will happen to my account.

I’m still trying to get over the shock. Dr. Shilpa would be the last person I’d suspect to do something like this. I guess looks can be that deceiving sometimes. Damn you – magnetic personality.


Dr. Chandana Shekar said...

Oh yeah, I remember that post of yours when u said u would join the gym n would reduce in three months!! it had reminded that i wasnt going to the gym since a while then!!man, this is like- makes us feel illiterate!!1 12k and no reciept. that lady indeed has a magnetic personality.anyways, hope ur gym membership stays!!

Blind Dayze said...

Deceievologist..thats what her Dr. degree must be for...

illusionaire said...

@ Dr. Chandana: hehehe... I was just about to fulfill that three months promise I made, and then Dr. Shilpa controversy happened and I gained all my fat back due to depression :D

@ Blind: If there was such a degree as that, then the correct spelling would be Deceivologist :P :D

Anonymous said...

Wow! van zia love!Hetiang mibum ching hi chuan, SUAI an nie tlat.

La kal tang tang tho rawh. I card pawh an pek letleh dawn che chu :-PI dul one pack nilo, sick pack kan nghak ;-))

illusionaire said...

lolz... nia ka dul hi a bawn tawh dawn lutuk, in the next 3 months :D

odzer said...

In 2008 I purchased a ticket to travel to Tokyo for around 40 K. It was from a travel agent that many of my friends and co-workers had often used. In fact one of my friends was even a childhood friend of that fellow. So guess what, the guy got the ticket canceled the same evening (E-Tickets can be canceled without your consent!!!!). I was left holding a worthless piece of paper. He even claimed that his credit card machine was broken so he had me swipe my card at two different merchants. It took me one year to get my money back from the card issuing bank, not to mention that guy just disappeared having done a 5 crore rupee scam. Some people left behind were senior citizens waiting to visit their kids abroad, interview givers, students etc etc. Some were even thrown out of the airport at the last minute. I know how bad it feels to be cheated and especially cheated by someone you know. I hope your membership remains valid. Good luck!! Remember always pay by card wherever you can, more chances of getting your funds back.

dr_feelgood said...

Thil pakhat min ti hre chhuak zawk. Hman ni khan mi pa khat in'Kan nu hian sa a lei hian hmelhriat ta ania, a tha ang, ati leh mai thin a'. 'A zuar tu hmelhriat ngawt mah la a sa kha i hmelhriat chuang hlei nem, sa thianghlim lo pawh ani thei'Ka ti thin a ti a. Dr nu hi a hmel chu i hre chiang, mahse a thinlung i hre lo tih a chiang.

Anonymous said...

Con artists always are endowed with magnetic personalities and charisma hence the reason they're so good at what they do. And again this is also why treading with caution and skepticism is a good thing.People say that its rude to simply judge someone without knowing who they really are but I say its better to be doubtful rather to regret it later.. and if our suspicions are proven wrong we at least from then on will have a valid reason for trust.

mangbuhril said...

kima, i thought u were high when u wrote that u would reduce ur tummy in three flat months.... hehe just kidding
seriously life is like that... we should be on guard for those smooth talkers who usually turns up to be smooth liars

OpaHmar said...

Epic Fail-ed!!!

The knife said...

No good comes of trying to lose weight

Banno said...

That's quite a story.

illusionaire said...

UPDATE: Dr. Shilpa has been caught by the cops! I also got my Membership card back from the gym management! Yay! In the system, my annual membership was entered as just a 3 months duration. But now they have officially put me as a one year course. I will start going more regularly from tomorrow onwards. :D

illusionaire said...

@ odzer: I completely understand. What is more painful is not about losing the money, but the thought that somebody we know so well could do this to us :(

@ dr_feelgood: A lo dik khawp mai, thinlung hriat chiang zawk hi. More wise words from you, more lessons for me to learn :)

@ dean: You are so right. At least those who have been conned before are more cautious (once bitten, twice shy), but for those who has never faced such a thing before, it is hard to imagine someone they know would do something like this.

@ mangbuhril: lolzzzzzz. Well, like I mentioned in the previous comment, I am going to start going to the gym regular from... one of these days. :)

@ Opa: #WIN

@ The Knife: hahhaha.... now that is something to consider (and use as a weapon when my girlfriend asks me why I'm not going to the gym regularly next time) :D

@ Banno: True stories are always quite a story :D

VaiVa said...

Lol... liar and cheater at the same building! You told the whole world that you're starting a gym not only to reduce weight but to gain confidence from her(?). She told you that a charming, handsome guys like you would never be troubled for some unworthy paper jobs, she enrolled you at the gym without a receipt.

Anyway, its a good news that she'd been apprehended by the cops. Meanwhile lie low so that you are not apprehhended by her for the same reason your doctor had been caught :D

Eveline said...

I should have been here earlier, but I was too tired to mosey on up to the computer.
I feel totally and completely betrayed too. After reading your post about getting started with the work-outs, I was so inspired to get my body toned that I joined a gym almost immediately after. And now it's been three months... and i'm still working at it.
I know I've made this all about me. But what isn't? :P

Varte said...

nuihzatthlak eee.... i dul phek, phiar hmuh kan lo in beisei tawh laia!!!

Alejendro said...