How you are cheated at Petrol Pump and lose money on every visit ?

POSTED BY Jagoinvestor ON March 31, 2014 COMMENTS (219)

Today I am going to explain a trick employed by Petrol Pump guys which might be costing you a lot of money on a per year basis. You might be loosing a couple of thousands each year because of this scam which probably goes on at each petrol pump.

Petrol Pump Scam in India

How Fraud at Petrol Pump Works!

When you ask them to fill petrol for Rs 1,000 , the attendant fills up the oil only for Rs 200 . When you ask him why he didnt fill up for Rs 1,000 . He will give a innocent smile and say that he heard Rs 200 and he will fill remaining Rs 800 , he resets the meter and fills up another Rs 800 petrol and you pay Rs 1,000 (200+800).

Whats the scam here ? The problem is that he never resets the meter to 0 , he continues from the Rs 200 point itself and go till Rs 800 , so in reality you only get the petrol worth Rs 800, but pay Rs 1,000 . The trick here is that when he says that he is resetting the meter to 0 and moves towards it, at that some moment, another team mate of attendant will disturb you with some question like – “Sir, Cash or Card?” , or “Sir, PUC karana hai kya?” , Or “Sir can you fill up this coupon ?” .

As a human tendency – you will have to look at him or hear him and in those 3-4 seconds , the main attendent will start the meter again and by the time you look at the meter, its somewhere near 300-400 , and you feel that the meter has restarted starting from 0 , but actually it was just continued from 200 point only. So you loose Rs 200 here.

how petrol pump fraud works in India

I would like to show you some of the real life experiences

Experience 1

Today I went on a 150Km trip to Kanchipuram. Because it was a long trip I decided to check the mileage of my car, so did not fill petrol at a regular pump and waited for the fuel indicator to sync with a marking. I reset the trip meter and filled petrol at the next petrol pump which was an Indian Oil pump in Pallavaram on the left while going towards Tambaram. I told the cashier that I wanted petrol for Rs.500 and took out the money from my purse and handed it to the cashier. When I looked at the guy at the pump, he told me that he had filled the petrol and wanted me to verify.

The meter showed Rs.200, so I told the guy that I asked for Rs.500, but I sensed something wrong. I was sure when he filled the next 300 from the time it took for it that he had not filled anything to start with as he showed me the meter too soon. I wasn’t sure about what to do in that position and left. It was obvious when I checked the mileage that the guy had cheated. I could go for a distance of only 52Kms with that petrol and the mileage for Rs.500 of petrol with that distance is 7.5Kmpl. Whereas if I take it as Rs.300, the mileage is 12.5Kmpl which is within the expected range. Moreover I filled for another Rs.500 at Kancheepuram and the mileage I got is 12.7Kmpl and the fuel indicator is still above the mark. I have been driving since 2001 and this is the first time something like this has happened to me. (Source)

Experience 2

At the first petrol dispensing counter (as you enter the petrol pump), the attendants frequently cheat customers. You ask them to fill, say, Rs.100 worth of petrol. However clearly you say it, one employee will fill only Rs.50 worth of petrol in just about 2 seconds when another employee tries to distract you. Within a blink of an eye, the counter goes from Rs. 0 to Rs.50. When you tell him that you’d asked for Rs.100 worth of petrol, he will apologize saying he didn’t hear it properly, and fill the remaining Rs.50 worth. The second Rs.50 petrol will take about 5-10 seconds to fill. You finally end up paying Rs.100 and getting petrol worth far less than that.

This has happened a few times with me and some friends. The cheating procedure has always been the same although the amounts differ. I know for sure that I’ve been cheated because my bike gives me a mileage of about 50km/litre normally, but when these incidents happen, I get far less mileage than this.. (Source)

How to Complain for this Petrol Pump Fraud?

IF you feel you are cheated, you can complain about this fraud to the petrol pump company like HPCL, BPCL or IOC. You have customer care numbers of these companies and also web portals for registering complaints online explaining them the exact issue (it can be various issues).

HPCL Web Portal –
HPCL Customer Care Phone – 155233 / 1800 2333 555

BPCL Web Portal –
BPCL Customer Care Phone – 155233/ 1800222725

IOC Web Portal/Customer Care –

Some other things you can do other than complaining

  • Also ask for complaint book from the attendant, and put the written complaint in that complaint book. Most of the times they will make an excuse that the complaint book is locked in the room or something like that, tell them you are calling the company customer care and will complain about them
  • Make sure you ask them to meet the outlet manager, ask for their phone numbers if they are not present and try to talk to them, make the scene
  • Make the scene, scream at them and be tough if you are very sure you are duped and lost the money. In front of other customers they are bound to correct their mistake
  • Open you fuel lid, only when the meter is reset to 0 .
  • Get out of your CAR and stand next to the person putting fuel, makes it tougher for them to cheat you


This is happening all over the country of various petrol pump outlets and this can easily be a scam worth thousands of crores rupees, provided there are thousands of petrol pumps in country and millions fill up petrol everyday. The best measure to fight against this is to spread this information to more and more people you know and also be attentive and alert while you are filling up petrol or diesel in your vehicle.

Have you ever come across this fraud has it happened with you ?

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219 replies on this article “How you are cheated at Petrol Pump and lose money on every visit ?”

  1. Barkha Jain says:

    Thanks a lot for this post….this actually helped a lot…we got fooled the same way just now at a bpcl petrol pump in gurgaon. when we noticed the meter we knew something was fishy… although we drove away…then while in the car i came across this post and at once knew what had happened…i asked my brother to drive back..we did go back to that same petrol pump and had a verbal argument…with the workers than the manager came and asked us to settle the whole thing..he even re filled the car with 1000 rs petrol…thank god i had asked for the bill earlier…we are going to complain about this incident (once we reach home)
    But again thanks a lot…i am going to share this stuff to as many ppl i knw

    1. Jagoinvestor Admin says:

      Hey Barkha Jain

      Glad to know that you liked the article.

      Please share it on your social media profile so that it can reach more and more people !


  2. Today I am also cheated in exactly same way. I said to fill petrol of rs 120 and he filled petrol of rs 40 first and then I didn’t noticed either he filled petrol of rs 80 or just meter reached at 80. When I went to home I saw that I got very less petrol.

    1. Thanks for your comment Vaibhav Verma

  3. Ashish says:

    In case we asked to fill 1000 petrol but attender fill only of 200 and realised his mistake. We should pay him 200 and move on to another petrol pump,.

  4. Ashish says:

    There should be an automated receipt for every fuel transaction, like ATM , then they will bound to fill accurate and I know it’s a wastage of papers . So, plastic or some other material should be used

    1. Thanks for your comment Ashish

  5. SuryaMahesh says:

    Important Point to note here

    1. As Riyaz told please feel compulsory in odd figures like I fill 4 litres – Rs. 280
    2. Car Owners should come out to fill petrol, Shell Petrol Pumps are good to serve, it is Best Way to fill petrol and again in odd figures, so these Fraud can not happen, if PUC, Discount Coupon people come, just keep an eye on counter and in better words – ask them to stay away.

    1. Jagoinvestor Admin says:

      Thanks for sharing that SuryaMahesh

    2. Jagoinvestor Admin says:

      Hi SuryaMahesh

      Thanks for your sharing your valuable comment on this topic. Please keep sharing your views in future also


  6. Kumkar says:

    Hope it’s happening only in India. Shame.

    1. Thanks for your comment Kumkar

  7. Arvind says:

    The Best possible way is to ask for the bill for the Petrol transaction done.. Do this before he starts filling up.. So that he won’t even consider attempting a fraud, because the transaction bill will show how much Petrol was filled up

    1. But how does it help. He will give 1000 bill and put 800 . What will you do in this case? How will you come to know about this ?

  8. Vishnu says:

    This happened with me on Agra expressway but I noticed as soon as I looked at my fuel meter and questioned the guy. Then I asked for separate receipt which he was not able to provide and then he refilled it again for rest of the amount.

    1. Thanks for sharing that Vishnu

    2. Jagan says:

      I met same incident yesterday in same agara indian oil…. I asked to fill for 300. that guy immediately given the card swipe machine to me to swipe the card.. I was bit confused. Usually they will swipe and will give the device to enter the pin but he wanted me to swipe by the second about to swipe I felt something fishy immediately i saw the meter it runned till 200 again the guy started talking and divert me. I saw the sudden change over of meter from 200 to 300 with in a second.(0 – 200 took 15secs approx). I shouted at the person he said no its faster so you cannot see the change over. I parked my bike and shouted like hell how it is possible? Again another person came how much you saw , I said Rs.200. He swiped for 200 and given the bill for Rs.200. These kind frauds happening mostly in Indian oil..

      1. Thanks for sharing that Jagan