Introduction of consumer
Why Consumer Protection is necessary?
Laws governing Consumer Protection Act, 1986
Basic rights of Consumer
1. Right to Safety
2. Right to Choose
3. Right to be Informed
4. Right to Consumer Education
5. Right to be Heard/Representation
6. Right to seek Redressal
Who is said to be a consumer?
A consumer is any individual that pays the fixed price of certain products or services to render its services for personal and not for resale or manufacturing purpose. An individual pays the price to avail services from the products, they are the one who does not just buy but also consumes the product or services. A consumer is someone who can make the decision whether to purchase an item at the store, and someone who can be influenced by marketing and advertisements. Advertisements and marketing of products and services plays a vital role in consumer behaviour.
Why Consumer Protection is necessary?
Consumers are the people who help the economy and maintain a balance. They should not be exploited, they should have an unbiased opinion about the products they buy and consume. This enables them to make the best choices based on their interests and prevents them from being mistreated or misled by businesses. Consumer protection policies, laws and regulations help increase consumer welfare by ensuring that businesses can be held accountable.
Law governing Consumer Protection Act, 1986
Consumer protection Act is the important laws that gives protection and safeguard the legal rights of every consumer. The Act was introduced in the year 1986 the Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Mr. Ram Vilas Paswan on July 8, 2019 introduced a bill in Lok Sabha for consumer protection. It will regulate matters related to violation of consumer rights, unfair trade practices, and misleading advertisements. This Act provides certain basic rights to the consumer they are as follows.
Right to Safety
This right is provided to ensure the safety of every consumer from unfair trade practices, hazardous products or substances that can prove harmful to life or property of consumer. It also ensures safety of consumer against unethical marketing or advertisements of products. It also provides safety against poor quality of products, guarantee or warranty on products that are not provided, etc. They should preferably purchase quality marked products such as ISI, AGMARK, etc
Right to Choose
It is the right of consumer to choose from a variety and range of products according to their needs and requirements. In case of monopolies, it means right to be assured of satisfactory quality and service at a fair price. It also includes right to basic goods and services. In a competitive market the sellers cannot influence you or urge you to buy only their products if any of the seller is doing such practice then the consumer can take action against them.
Right to be Informed
Consumers have the rights to know about the products or services they are willing to pay the price for. Every detail regarding the product should be mentioned by the seller or it should be mentioned in the product packaging itself. Details about the quantity, quality, ingredients used, purity, price, etc should be mentioned. Consumers have the right to ask for the details of the products.
Right to Consumer Education
It is much easier to know about the rights of consumers for the people who are literate, but the illiterate ones get cheated on many times because they do not have the knowledge and understanding of the laws that are made for the benefits of consumers. Also, there are literate people who are ignorant about such laws. So, it is important to educate the consumers about their rights relating to Consumer Protection. As a part of consumer education, we can see pamphlets, banners to give knowledge to consumers, but this is bare minimum effort the government is making so the Government of India has included the Consumer Protection Act in the school/college curriculum.
Right to be Heard/Representation
If a consumer has been exploited or has any complaints against the manufacturer or seller, they can represent themselves in front of the court. It also includes right to get involved in decision making in the Government bodies. Every company must have a complaint cell to hear the grievances of consumers.
Right to seek Redressal
The consumers have right to approach the court if they have evident proof that they have been cheated on by the seller or due to any unfair trade practice by the manufacturer, they are eligible to get compensation for their loss. There are State forums to hear them out and give them justice. There are three Consumer court at different level they are, the district Consumer Forum, The State Consumer Forum and the National Consumer forum according to the amount that are specified.
The Consumer Protection Act, 1986 is formulated for the benefit of consumers and every consumer have the right to exercise their rights against any unfair trade practices, manipulation by the seller, etc. There are other protection to consumers but these are the basic rights of every consumer which a consumer should be aware of to raise their voice against the wrong doer.
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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