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Consumer Rights

Who is a Consumer?

A consumer is a person who buys goods and services for self consumption, not for manufacturing or resale.

A Consumer gets to decide whether to buy or not, like when a person goes to a store to buy a beverage, shirt or anything , they get to decide.

He/she can purchase goods for a consideration of paid/ promised to pay/ partly paid/ partly promised.

According to Act, the definition of consumer is-

Who buys goods or hires any service.

Uses good or hires service with the approval of buyer or service provider

Uses goods and services to earn livelihood by self employment.

The Consumer Protection Act was passed in 1986 and amended a number of times in 1991, 1993, 2002 and later changed to COPRA (Consumer Protection Act) 2019.

Some of the rights of consumers under Consumer Protection Act 1986, section 6 are-

Right to safety – Every consumer has a right to be protected from goods and services that are hazardous to life and property.

Right to Information – Every Consumer has a right to know about the quality, quantity, purity, standard, price of goods and services, so as to protect the consumer from unfair trade practices.

Right to Choose – Every Consumer has a right to choose from a number of goods and services at competitive prices.

Right to be Heard – Every Consumer has the right to be heard and assured that the consumer’s interest will be received with due considerations.

Right to seek Redressal – Every Consumer has the right to redressal against unfair practices and extensive exploitation of consumers.

Right to Consumer Education – Every Consumer is entitled to know and obtain knowledge of all the remedies against the exploitation of the manufacturer of goods and services.

There are three levels of Consumer protection Council which are advisory in nature i.e Central, state and District Consumer protection Council.

The main objective of the Central and State Consumer Protection Council is to promote the rights of the customers as mentioned above.

Consumer Protection Act (COPRA) - 2019

The Consumer Protection Act 2019 (COPRA) covers both E-Commerce transactions and tele-shopping.

Under this act, consumers can file a complaint where the complainant lives.

E-Filing of complaints is included and cases can be heard through online-conferencing.

District Commision deals with goods and services with a value of upto 1 crore, the State Commision from 1 crore to 10 crore, the National Commision above 10 crores.

CCPA has been established and has three levels of Consumer protection Council which are advisory in nature i.e Central, state and District Consumer protection Council.

The main objective of the Centre, State, District Consumer Protection Council is to promote the rights as mentioned above.

The CCPA has the authority to investigate matters, recall any product or withdraw any services and file cases at different forums.

Consumers can even get compensation for the harm after using the product/ services from the seller.

Mediation Centres are set up for dispute resolution and courts can refer to settlement through mediation.

Mandatory rules have been set for e-commerce websites relating to refund, exchange, mode of shipment,guarantee, country of origin, modes of payment, security for modes of payment, delivery time.

Further, consumer complaints should be acknowledged within 48 hours and redressed within 1 month.

News Desk
News Desk
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