Mumbai: Hindustan Unilever Ltd, or HUL, has named an ombudsman to deal with consumer complaints that could spill over into the courts, in the first initiative of its kind by an Indian company.
Retired Mumbai high court judge M.S. Rane will independently investigate and address complaints by individuals, the consumer products maker said.
“Our customer care service, LeverCare, is very responsive. But, we decided to take it to the next level with an alternative escalation mechanism which is independent, not residing within the company and takes decisions independently,” said Ashok Gupta, executive director, legal, at HUL. The decision of the ombudsman will be binding, HUL said.
HUL has about 200 cases registered against it in India. An average of four to five cases are brought every year and the company is hoping the appointment of an ombudsman will result in a decline in that. “We will also be sending out letters to complainants in each of these cases, urging them to use the alternative,” he said.