Consumer Rights in India: What you need to know about it!
A customer is a person who buys goods and service either by visiting the store or by shopping online. Whatever be the way, it’s the right of a customer to know about the different aspects of a good or service such as its quality, quantity, potency, purity, price and standard. There are so many people in our country who does not even know their rights as a consumer. Consumer Rights in India is always ignored stating it as least important thing. Companies via advertisements pretends to show that consumers are the only KING for them. But most of the times, profit takes the priority beating the customers. That is why the government has introduced the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 which seeks to promote and protect the interest of consumer rights against the defects in the goods or services. It aims to secure the Rights of a Consumer against unfair or restrictive trade practices.
Consumer Protection Act, 1986
According to the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 everybody, including individuals, a Hindu undivided family, and a company have the right to exercise their consumer rights for the purchase of goods and services made by them. The Consumer Rights in India gives its consumers several rights to enjoy.
Consumer Protection Bill, 2019
The Lok Sabha on 8 July 2019 introduced The Consumer Protection Bill, 2019 replacing the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. The Bill was introduced by the minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Ram vilas Paswan.
Existing Rights Given To The Consumers
Rights to Safety
Right to Safety means the right to be protected against the marketing of goods and services, which are hazardous to life and property. It is applicable to specific areas like Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals and Food Processing.
Every year thousands or millions of citizen of India are liked by immoral practices by the medical and automobile industry. Before purchasing any product, consumers should carefully insist on the quality of the product as well as on the guarantee of the products and services. Consumers should preferably purchase the quality marked products like ISI, Agmark.
Importance of Quality Marks
Quality marks gives the consumers a visual and clear quality assessment tool which adds the value to the product. The Quality marks used in India are ISI, AGMARK, Vegetarian And Non-vegetarian Marks, Hallmark, Wool mark, Silk Mark, Handloom mark , FSSAI etc.
Right To Be Informed
It means the right to be informed about the quality, quantity, potency, purity, standard and price of goods and services so as to protect the consumer against the unfair trade practices. Before making any decision, the consumer should insist on getting all the information about the product or services so that the consumers can act wisely.
Right To Choose
It means the right to be assured, wherever possible, to have access to a variety of goods and services at competitive prices. It also grants the right to be assured of satisfactory quality and service at a fair price. It also includes the right to basic goods and services because unrestricted right of the minority to choose can mean a denial for the majority of its fair share. In competitive market, the right to choose can be better exercised where a variety of goods are available at competitive prices.
Right To Be Heard
In accordance to the Consumer Protection act, 1986, The Right to be heard and to be assured that consumer’s interest will receive due consideration at appropriate forums. The Right to be heard gives the consumer of India to put forward their complains and concerns against the products and ensure that requires steps are taken into consideration. The consumers should open their eyes and form non-political and non-commercial consumer organizations which can be given representations in various committees formed by the government and other bodies in matters relating to consumers.
Right To Seek Redressal
It means the right to seek redressal against unfair trade practices or unscrupulous exploitation of consumers. Consumers must make complaint for their genuine injustice. Their complains may not be addressed by the government at some times but its impact on the society may be very large. One can take the helps of consumer organizations in seeking redressal of their grievances.
Right To Consumer Education
Education is the most important mean of facilitating learning and the rural part of India is mainly devoid of this. This is the main reason for their exploitation. The right to Consumer education means the the right to acquire the knowledge and skill to be an informed consumer throughout the life. In order to achieve the real consumer protection , one must know their rights and must exercise them.
The consumer must be active, alert and aware of their rights and question themselves about the quantity and quality of goods bought and services used.
Be Active & Involved
The consumer must be assertive and responsible so that he/she cannot be exploited.
Be United & Organised
The consumers must unite and stand together as a group so as to develop the strength and influences to promote and protect consumer interest.
Being a consumer does not mean to be get trapped in the hands of advertisements, the eye-catching advertisements misleads the consumers thus making their hard earned money going into waste. So it’s the right of the consumers to think wisely while purchasing any goods or availing any services. Consumer Rights in India can be accessed by raising the complain online on the web portal Consumer helpline.
You can also contact LawyerINC in the case of any confusion or to file a complaint.