As per the preamble of the Consumer Protection Act, “An act to provide for better protection of the interests of consumer and for that purpose to make provision for the establishment of consumer councils and other authorities for the settlements of consumer disputes and fir matters connected therewith.”
1. Applies to all the goods and services (unless exempted by central government)
2. Covers all public, private or co-operative sectors.
3. Establishes Consumer Protection Councils at central and state levels.
4. Provides many rights to consumers such as right to safety, right to information, choice, representation, education, etc.
5. Provides safety to consumers regarding defective products, dissatisfactory services and unfair trade practices.
Section 6 says the objectives of the central council to promote and protect the right of the consumers such as:
1. The right to be protected against the marketing of goods and services which are hazardous to life and property.
2. The right to be informed about the quality, quantity , potency, purity in standard and price of goods so as to protect the consumer against unfair trade practices.
3. The right to be assured wherever possible access to a variety of goods and services are at a competitive price.
4. The right to be heard and to be assured that the consumer interest bill received new consideration at appropriate forums.
5. The right to seek redressal and against unfair trade practices or unscrupulous exploitation of consumers.
6. The right of consumer education.
7. Provide a channel for quick and efficient resolution of complaints including the imposition of fines and damages.
RIGHTS OF A CONSUMER:
In today scenario, many businesses are doing unfair trade practices and fraud with the consumers. The uninformed consumer is tested on the grounds of the government of India and various other organizations have enacted certain rights in favor of consumers so that they can safeguard themselves against the unfair traders. The rights are:
1. Right to safety: This right protects the consumer from the hazardous products that are provided by the traders. The consumer has a right to protect himself from marketing of goods and services that are hazardous to life and property.
2. Right to information: It is the duty of the trader to inform consumer about the product. But the law has given a special and the most helpful right for the consumer. According to this right the consumer has a full right to get the information about the quality, quantity and purity for the goods and services.
3. Right to choice: Right to choice means that the consumer has a right to buy or hire the product or services of his own choice. It can only be possible if there is availability, ability and access in the goods and services. It is the right of the consumer to select his own linking of products and services.
4. Right to be heard: This right gives the consumer a facility to be heard in case of any unfair trade practices. He can represent himself against the fraud conducted by the trader against him.
5. Right to seek redressal: In case the consumer is exploited or fraud has been done with the consumer due to the unfair trade practices, then the consumer has a right to represent himself and to claim compensation for the loss or damage caused to him. The consumer can claim the damages caused by replacing the product by repairing the defect in the goods or ser4vices.
6. Right to consumer education: According to this right, the consumer must be educated about the goods or services. If the consumer is literate he can easily identify the goods and the defects in it. Various organizations are opened in the country in order t0o educate the consumers so that awareness among consumers will increase.
Dr. V.N Shrikhande vs. Anita Sen Fernandes, 2010
The petitioner, Anita Sen Fernandes, alleged negligence by a medical practitioner, Dr. V.N Shrikhande, claiming that the left a mass of gauge in her abdomen during a procedure to remove stones from the gallbladder. The Supreme Court following the Discovery Rule evolved by the courts in the United States noted that the petitioner had been experiencing pain and discomfort since the time of the operation for which she continued to take pain killers for nine years without the consultancy of the doctor. In the light of this, the court set aside the commission’s order and dismissed the complaint.
Sehgal school of competition V. Dalbir Singh, 2008
The state tribunal following the view of the apex court and the national commission held that no educational institution shall collect sum fees for the duration of the entire course and if one does, such extra fees should be returned in case the student drops out due to deficiency.
The consumer protection Act has proved to be a helping hand to the consumers and protect them from being exploited in the hands of huge competitions in the market. The traders and firms are still working on how to make huge profits and this can be one of the way by which the consumers are being exploited. The legislature and the judiciary are making amendments in the act from time to time but the consumer himself needs to be careful, aware of the people in the market.
I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.
If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.
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