Consumer protection refers to protecting the interest of consumers. An analysis of marketing
management has made it clear that consumer is a kingpin in the market. The producer should produce
goods keeping in mind the requirements of consumers and satisfy the consumer but it is observed
that this obligation is neglected by some businessmen and they are involved in the unfair practices
Such as supply of substandard quality, adulteration etc. So there is a need for consumer protection
Hence consumer protection means protecting the interest of the consumer.
Importance of Consumer Protection
Importance from consumers ‘point of view
1 .consumer ignorance
2. unorganised consumers
3. widespread exploitation of consumers
Importance from businessmen’s point of view
- Long-term interest of business
2. Businessman uses society’s resources
4. moral/ethical justification
Legal Protection to consumers
Government of India has provided various laws and legislations to protect the interest of consumer and some of these regulations are
The Consumer Protection Act 1986. Enactment of consumer protection Act 1986 was one of the most
Important steps are taken to protect the interest of consumer. The provision of act came into force
July 1, 1987. The main features of this act are:
(1) This act has provided various rights and responsibilities to consumers.
(2) It provides safeguard to customers against defective goods, deficient, services, unfair trade
practices and other forms of their exploitation.
(3)the act has provided three-tier redressal agencies where consumers can file complaints. these are district forum, state commission and national commission.
Right to safety
According to this right, the consumers have the right to be protected against the marketing of goods and services which are hazardous to life and property. This right is important for a safe and secure life. This right includes concern for consumers long term interest as well as for their present requirement. Sometimes the manufacturing defects in pressure cookers, gas cylinders and other electrical appliances can cause loss to life, health and property of consumers. This right to safety protects the consumer from sale of hazardous goods and services.
Right to Information.
According to this right, the consumer has the right to get information about the quality, quantity, purity, standard and price of goods or service so as to protect himself against the abusive and unfair practices., The producer must supply all the relevant information at a suitable place.
Right to make Choice. According to this right, every consumer has the right to choose the goods or services of his or her likings, The right to choose means an assurance of availability, ability and access to a variety of products and services at competitive price and competitive price means just or fair price. Ihe producer or supplier or retailer should not force the customer to buy a particular brand only. Consumer should be free to choose the most suitable product from his poit of view.
Right to be Heard or Right to Representation.
According to this right, the consumer has the right to represent himself or to be heard or right to advocate his interest. In case a consumer has been exploited or has any complaint against the product or service then he has the right to be heard and be assured that his/her interest would receive due consideration. This right includes the right to representation in the government and in other policy-making bodies. Under this right, the companies must have complaint cells to attend the complaints of customers.
Right to Seek Redressal.
According to this right, the consumer has the right to get compensation
or seek redressal against unfair trade practices or any other exploitation. This right assures justice
to the consumer against exploitation The right to redressal includes compensation in the form of
money or replacement of goods or repair of a defect in the goods as per the satisfaction of consumer
Various redressal forums are set up by the government at national level and state level.
Right to Consumer Education.
According to this right, it is the right of consumer to acquire the
knowledge and skills to be informed to customers. It is easier for literate consumers to know their
rights and take actions but this right assures that illiterate consumer can seek information about
the existing acts and agencies are set up for their protection. The government of India has included
consumer education in the school curriculum and in various university courses. Government is also
making use of media to make the consumers aware of their rights and make wise use of their
Apart from the above six rights, two additional rights are recommended by the UNO
- Consumer must exercise his rights
- Cautious consumer
- Filing complaints for the redressal of genuine grievances
- Consumer must be quality conscious
- Do not be carried out by advertisement
- insist on cash memo.
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