Consumer Protection

Consumer Protection
United We Stand!
The Government and Us
The Consumer
Mahatma Gandhi said, "A consumer is the most
important visitor on our premises. He is not
dependent on us, we are on him. He is not an
interruption to our work, he is the purpose of it. We
are not doing a favour to a consumer by giving
him an opportunity. He is doing us a favour by
giving us opportunity to serve him.”
From the Social Activist’s desk:
“We have got problems and we need
to do something about them. I am
going to tell you about those
problems and we will explore what
needs to be done to set things right!”
What we face as Consumers
Adulteration of food substances by traders through
addition of substances which are injurious to health
or removal of substances which are nutritious or by
lowering their quality standards
Supply of defective goods
Use of deceptive or incorrect rates on products
Use of false or non-standard weights and measures
in supply of goods
Selling above the MRP
Unauthorised sale of essential products like
medicines, etc. beyond their expiry date to ignorant
Poor customer services
How do we deal with the problems?
Build Awareness of Consumer Protection
Take Legal Action by lodging complaints
against unscrupulous practices
Be vigilant while purchasing products and
Form Consumer Associations and Clubs
that aim to promote welfare of Consumers
Support the Government in the fight for
Justice for All
From the Policy Maker’s Desk
“There are miles to go before we
sleep. We have come a long way yet
there is much to be done. Let me
give you a glimpse into your past
and show you your present so that
together we can pave the way for a
better future.”
Yesterday to Today
Pre 1950
The Indian Contract Act of
1872, the Sale of Goods Act
of 1930, the Indian Penal
Code of 1860, the Drugs and
Cosmetics Act of 1940, the
Usurious Loans Act of 1918,
and the Agriculture Procedure
(Grading and Marketing Act)
of 1937
Post 1950
The Essential Commodities Act
of 1955, the Prevention of
Food Adulteration Act of 1954
and the Standard of Weights
and Measures Act of 1976.
For fifty-five years, the Sale
of Goods Act of 1930 [SGA]
was the exclusive source of
consumer protection in India.
The Indian legal system
welcomed a new phase with
the enactment of the
Consumer Protection Act of
1986 [“CPA”], which was
specifically deigned to protect
consumer interests.
Where We Stand
For Our Future
To make things better, the Government can do a lot:
Make our Consumer Grievance Redressal Machinery strong
and efficient
Bring in more staff for speedy redressal of pending cases
Encourage greater involvement of District Machinery
Ask for Action Plans from States on a regular and periodic
Provide review of progress made by each State
Operate State level Consumer Information Centres
Conduct Consumer Education programmes through various
Conduct seminars and workshops with Voluntary Consumer
From the Lawyer’s Desk:
“ There is plenty of action happening
in Consumer Protection. The
Government is doing quite a bit but
many of us are unaware of the
changes taking place. I am going to
give you a ringside view of the
action! We all need to be aware of
how we can help ourselves”
Consumer Protection Initiatives by
the Government
Consumer Protection initiatives by the
Government revolve around the following three
Firstly, providing a legal framework that
comprises of the Consumer Protection Act.
Secondly, evolving standards for different
products to enable the consumers to make an
informed choice about different products and so
that only safe products are circulated in the
Thirdly, consumer awareness and education.
Consumer Awareness Initiatives
by the Government
Publicity through print media to educate the
consumers about their rights and responsibilities.
Publicity through electronic medium by telecast of
video spots on various consumer related issues
such as ISI, Hall-Mark, Alternate
Dispute, Redressal System, Weights and Measures,
Rights of Consumers etc.
‘Jago Grahak Jago’, an initiative which empowers
consumers by making them aware about their
rights as well as the Grievance Redressal
Where we can go for help
A CORE (Consumer Online Research and
Empowerment) Centre has been set up in
collaboration with Consumer Coordination Council
(CCC) through signing of an MoU. It is the only
authorised agency of the Department of Consumer
Affairs to handle 'Online Consumer Complaints' for
redressal through mediation. By accessing the
online Complaint Redressal System in the CORE,
the consumers can register themselves and lodge
their grievance online.
Where we can go for help
A National Consumer Helpline (NCH) project was
launched by the Department of Consumer Affairs in
coordination with Delhi University, Department of
Commerce. Under the helpline, consumers from all
over the country can dial a toll-free number and
seek telephonic help for problems that they face as
consumers. The helpline intends to deal with
problems related to telecom, courier, banking,
insurance, financial services, etc.
From the Public Relations
Manager’s Desk :
“ Its time we took responsibility for
doing the right thing! All of us need
to be proactive. There is a lot each of
us can do. Let me tell you about a
few of the things that we can do to
make sure we act as aware and
responsible citizens”
What we can do
If you are a Consumer Organisation:
Set up a Review Committee which posts reviews
on products and services.
Ensure that the products and services reviewed
are bought from the market and not donated to the
organisation by businesses.
Do not allow your review to commercially
promote or discourage the use of any product or
service. An unbiased view will build integrity of
your opinion.
What we can do
If you are a Business:
High ethical standards to ensure that your
customers get the best from you.
Remember that you exist because the
customer buys from you.
Self regulation on unfair practices such as
black marketing and hoarding.
Check on supply of inferior goods or
What we can do
If you are a Consumer:
Problems with Food, Drugs and Cosmetics
Injury due to use of an unsafe product
Cheating in any form by seller
Do not neglect to report irresponsible and
unethical behaviour by a business. You will only
encourage it to continue unfair practices.
From the Reporter’s Desk:
“We need to approach the right
authorities in order to get justice.
Letting those who dupe us get away
with it encourages them do dupe
many others. Let me tell you where
to go and what to do when you want
Legal Redressal Machinery
Making a Complaint
Commission Commission Forum
A complaint can
be made when
the value of
goods and
services along
claimed exceeds
Rs. 1 crore.
A complaint can
be made when
the value of
goods and
services along
claimed exceeds
Rs. 20 lakhs but
does not exceed
Rs. 1 crore.
A complaint can
be made when
the value of
goods and
services along
claimed does
not exceeds Rs.
20 lakhs.
Information required for a
• Name and full address of complainant
• Name and full address of opposite party
• Description of goods and services
• Quality and quantity
• Price
• Date & proof of purchase
• Nature of deception
• Type of redressal requested
United We Stand!
Let us join hands to make a better
 Most of all, SUPPORT!
NCDRC (National Consumer Disputes Redressal
Department of Consumer Affairs