Vodafone has pulled off a shady trick to penalize a woman for not paying her bills by suspending her husband’s mobile number as well as her own. Sounds pretty straight-forward, albeit a bit cruel, right? Well, it is not just what Vodafone did that is surprising, it is actually how Vodafone accomplished its goal that will blow your mind. As the story goes, the telecom operator zeroed down on the victim’s husband in her absence by using his Aadhaar number which was mentioned in a Facebook post.

The unfortunate Vodafone subscriber, Gayathri Ganesh, was in the United States for a period of around two months. When she returned back, her billing plan was suspended and her number was deactivated for failure to pay the bills. In the meanwhile, Vodafone also proceeded to suspend the mobile number of her husband by means which can only be called shady, to say the least.

Here’s how the whole saga unfolded in the words of the victim’s husband:

When the victim’s husband contacted Vodafone’s authorities asking them the reason behind his number’s deactivation, they told him that he had agreed to Vodafone suspending his number if his wife’s bills were not paid. (FYI: The agreement is valid only if a couple’s mobile numbers are connected). In this case, the couple’s mobile numbers were not connected and both of them paid their bills with separate corporate accounts.

Following is the chain of tweets Gayathri sent to recount Vodafone’s deplorable act.

As if Vodafone India’s callous act was not effective enough, they responded with automated tweets to the victim’s messages, but didn’t give a valid explanation for the action. The whole incident is not just an example of a brand’s shrewd behavior, it also shines some light on the exploitation of Aadhaar to commit such an act in the first place (Cue: Airtel’s Payments Bank’s Aadhaar controversy), as well as the lack of proper telecom regulatory laws that can shield customers from such wrongdoings.