Mumbai-based start-up Boobmybai.com has announced a blanket ban on the supply of domestic help to Bollywood stars. The start-up, which claims to have served its customers with 10,000 maids, was founded by Anupam Sinhal has written a detailed blog explaining the reason behind his decision.
Without naming any Bollywood artists, Sinhal said that some of them had ill-treated the domestic help, supplied by his start-up while others had verbally and physically abused them.
1) Celebrity 1
She came to us looking for a male helper at a budget of Rs. 4000 per month! This is even lower than the minimum wage of Maharashtra. We refused and told her that we wont be able to provide a helper in this budget (wonder where does all the money go which earns through her movies). After a lot of negotiation she finally agreed upon Rs.10000 per month (which was still on the lower side considering she has a 4-bhk home and the helper needed to clean the home 6 times everyday! Yes- 6 times!) – We went ahead and provided the helper and all was going well. Unfortunately the mother of the helper passed away. The helper was from Bihar and he wanted to go back to Bihar to perform the last rituals. He promised to be back after 15 days since he wanted the money to support his family. The “celebrity” called us and told us that she wont let the person go till the time we send in a replacement. Guess what! She did not. She could not care less. We did give a replacement on Monday. But the helper missed out on her mothers last ritual. I have no words to the extent of disgust I now have for this lady
2) Celebrity 2
She is a unique case altogether. She has a huge home in Mumbai suburbs and she hired a maid through us. BookMyBai has a 6-month replacement clause with the employers which means that if any domestic help leaves within the first 6-months, then we would provide a free replacement. The extent of torture and harassment to the maids was so high that we replaced maids 7 times. Each maid worked for 7-10 days before giving up and quitting. She drives a 3 crore car. Doesn’t give food to her domestic help. NO FOOD!!! Really!! Drink tea and eat bread 3 times a day. Wow!
Finally we gave the full-refund to the lady since she threatened us that her brother will send in a few bouncers to our office and “fix” us up. I didn’t want this atmosphere in my office and chose to part ways
3) Celebrity 3
This experience actually convinced my team that we would not deal with celebrities anymore. Physical abuse of the maid was almost a daily affair. As soon as we got to know, we asked the maid to leave as soon as possible. When she came to our office, we could see physical marks on her body of physical abuse. We supported her and wanted to file a complaint in the local police station. But she asked us to let it go.
The celebrity called us and told us that she has 4 lakh followers on twitter and she would post bad tweets about the company if we don’t give her a replacement.
4) Celebrity 4
She was also paying well. At least more than Mumbai market rate. However her attitude towards the staff was not less than someone who is uneducated. Verbal and physical abuse was a part of her daily routine. The maid got so fed up that she just absconded to her village and never came back. This left such a huge scar in her mind that later she told us she would never want to come back to any city. Now this left us to wonder. How do these people abuse their domestic helps as slaves.
5) Celebrity 5
This one is a classic. She took a maid from us. Everything was fine and the maid was happy. No abuse/harassment whatsoever. However she refused to pay us our service charges. BookMyBai charges about Rs. 15000 for a live-in maid. Initially when we were calling her for our payment, she stopped taking our calls. Later she flat-out refused to pay and said –“jo karna hai karlo!” – If I am not wrong, she got multiple crores as alimony from her husband. She infact told us that if we call her again then she would file a case of harassment and extortion with the crime branch. CRIME BRANCH! Wow!