Rights of a consumer under consumer protection Act, 1986
The consumers are the last member of a business chain. They are the potential buyers who buys products and services from the seller or the service providers. According to Sec-2(1)(d) of the Consumer Protection Act 1986, a consumer is a person who purchases any goods or services or hires or avails the services of some person for his own personal use and not for manufacturing or resale of that good. Thus, we have a clear idea that who are the consumers. In this article we will discuss about the rights of the consumers under The Consumer Protection Act, 1986.
The rights of a consumers include six basic rights. These rights are very important for the consumers to be safe from the exploitation of the sellers or the service providers. These rights are as follows: –
- Right to Safety– This is the first right under the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. This right safeguards the safety of the consumers from the hazardous products and services. This right has a very wide scope of application, for instance, this right is available in the areas of electrical appliances, healthcare, automobile, pharmaceuticals, housing, travel etc. A substance is defective and a consumer uses it and gets hurt. He can file a suit under the Consumer Protection Act. Now in this time, various research persons and scientists are present in order to check the quality and safety of the products and services before launching it to the market. Thus, this act mandates all the sellers, product manufacturers and service providers to check the products and services before making it usable for the consumers. The quality of the products is tested and are marked safe by providing an ISI mark. ISI stands for Indian Standards Institution. This institution provides a certificate if a product is proved to be safe and secure. The consumers must check this ISI certified mark before buying certain goods and services.
- Right to Information– This is the second right under the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. It refers to the right of a consumer to be informed about the quantity, quality, price, potency, purity and standard of the goods and services. This prevents the sellers and service providers to practice unfair trade practices to earn more and more profits. Thus, the consumers must be provided with all the information about the products because it is the right to be informed of. Various sellers tell the prices much higher than the actual price of the goods. Or they do a clever act. After selling a particular product they charge such a higher price that the consumers are bound to pay a higher price for a products and services. This is an act of fraud by selling a product at a higher price than actual price. This type of act is punishable under section 420 of Indian Penal Code. This type of sellers is punished rigorously under this act.
- Right to choose– This is the third right under the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. This right refers to as the right which helps the consumers to choose a variety of goods at different price rates. It is very much possible to have access to various products at different prices. This reflects the age long market competition among the sellers. Therefore, it is on the discretion of the consumers what products or services he will avail and on what price. A seller or service provider must not compel the consumers to buy a specific product looking on the amount of profit they will make after selling the product and services. This is a wrong act performed by the sellers and service providers. This is a form of unfair trade practice. A consumer can file a suit under The Consumer Protection Act, 1986.
- Right to be heard– This is the fourth right under The Consumer Protection Act, 1986. It is referred to as the right to be heard and to be assured that consumers’ interests will receive due consideration at appropriate forums. This right was introduced for a consumer in order to ensure that all the complaints and issues of the consumers are heard duly under the appropriate authority. This is because of this right that almost all the big selling companies have a separate department known as the customer service to help the consumers in case of any dispute or any complaint regarding the quality or quantity of the product. There are several consumer courts where the exploited consumers file suit against the sellers who did exploited them.
- Right to seek redressal– A consumer can be exploited by the sellers. This right is the fifth right and also a vital right under the consumer protection act, 1986. Any exploited consumer files a suit against the sellers at the consumer forums. These forums hear the exploitation done by the sellers. There is proper redressal system for solving the disputes. There are a total of three forums- District forum which are present at each and every district for hearing the cases not exceeding the compensation amount and value of goods of 20 lac rupees, the state forum which are present in each and every state in India for entertaining complaints or issues where the value of goods and services and the compensation claimed between he range of 20 lacs and one crore rupees and the national forum where the complaints are heard where the value of goods and services and the compensation claimed exceeds one crore rupees.
- Right to shopper Education– it’s the sixth right beneath the buyer Protection Act, 1986. it’s the correct of every and each one who may be a subject of India to possess data concerning all the laws and policies regarding the buyer. Therefore, it’s created certain the fabric concerning the consumer-related laws is well on the market everywhere India however there’s still a serious a part of the population United Nations agency isn’t responsive to his laws and rights. this can be the explanation several awareness programmes are organized by the govt. of India like ‘Jago Grahak Jago’ and also the camps organized by numerous lawyers in remote areas of the country.
These rights are sensible and to be claimed by every and each shopper to be safe from the exploitations done by the sellers. These are the basics of the buyer Protection Act, 1986.
Author: Sattwik Biswas,
2nd Year BBA LLB under IFIM Law School, Bangalore