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Consumers are one of the important factor in the development of economy of any nation.But unfortunately many time we heard about the duplicity and cheating by way of overcharging, black marketing, misleading advertisements, etc has become the common practice of greedy sellers and manufacturers to make unreasonable profits. In this context, it is the duty of the government to confer some rights on consumers to safeguard their interests.
Let us discuss about the rights of consumers which are mentioned in details at the Official Website of Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution. http://fcamin.nic.in/index.asp
Rights of consumers in India
- Right to Safety: The right to be protected against goods which are hazardous to life and property.
- Right to Information: The right to be informed about the quality, quantity, purity, price and standards of goods.
- Right to Choose: The right to be assured access to a variety of products at competitive prices, without any pressure to impose a sale, i.e., freedom of choice.
- Right to be Heard: The right to be heard and assured that consumer interests will receive due consideration at appropriate forums.
- Right to Seek Redressal: The right to get relief against unfair trade practice or exploitation.
- Right to Education: The right to be educated about rights of a consumer.
Documents regarding Consumer Protection Act in Hindi and English can be downloaded from here
Duties of consumers in India
Along with the Rights of consumer here are the some responsibilities of the consumer which should be followed..
- Illiteracy and Ignorance: Consumers in India are mostly illiterate and ignorant. They do not understand their rights. So its our duty to know about our rights and to use it in the right place.
- Unorganized Consumers: In India consumers are widely dispersed and are not united. They are at the mercy of businessmen. On the other hand, producers and traders are organized and powerful.
- Spurious Goods: There is increasing supply of duplicate products. It is very difficult for an ordinary consumer to distinguish between a genuine product and its imitation. It is necessary to protect consumers from such exploitation by ensuring compliance with prescribed norms of quality and safety. Always check the norms of the product.
- False Advertising: Some businessmen give misleading information about quality, safety and utility of products. Consumers are misled by false advertisement. To stop this, we the consumer have to know about the product.
- Malpractices of Businessmen: Only consumer can avoid and stop the mal practises of the businessmen by opposing them. So this is one of the duty of consume
Where consumers can file complaints:
- National Consumer Helpline : 1800-11-4000
- Direct email to Consumer Complaints Official Email Id firstname.lastname@example.org
- Send a suggestion using this Email Form.
- Download details of Telephone Directory of Department of Consumer Services.
- Complete FAQ on Consumer ACT
Complaints are generally categorized into three section.
- Where the value of goods and services involved is less than Rs. 20 Lakhs in value, you will have to file the complaint in the District Forum constituted in the specified districts of a State.
- Where the value of goods and services involved is more than Rs. 20 Lakhs in value but does not exceed Rs 1 crore you will have to file the complaint with the State Commission ( Address of Consumer Court in India ) constituted in the capital cities of the different states
- Where the value of goods and services involved is more than 1 crore in value then you can file a complaint with the National Commission which has been constituted only in New Delhi.
So start using your consumer rights and get benefit from it!!