Consumer Protection Act Class 12 | Significance | Rights Available |

Consumer Protection Act Class 12 | Significance | Rights Available | Chapter 12 |

Meaning and Concept

It refers to the steps which are taken to protect the interest of the customer from widespread exploitation such as unfair trade practices of producers and sellers.

Significance of Consumer Protection

For the Customer

  1. Ignorance of Customer: In general, the customer is not aware about the rights which he can exercise in order to stop the exploitation.
  2. Unorganised Customer: Before the Consumer Protection Act, the consumers were unorganised owing to which a single customer could not raise his voice. Under Consumer Protection Act different types of bodies were establish which raise voice on the behalf of the customer.
  3. Widespread Exploitation: The customers were exploited on a large scale in the following ways; adulteration of food, selling in inferior quality of products, misleading advertisement, selling less weighted goods etc.

For the Business

  1. Business Uses Society Resources: Business various resources from society such as material, labour, capital etc. therefore, it is the duty of the business to provide better facilities and good quality of products.
  2. Social Responsibility: Businesses discharge its social responsibility through protecting the consumers form unfair trade practices for it is the duty of every business to take care of all the stakeholders.
  3. Intervention by the Government: Government intervenes when the businesses do not take care of the interest of the customers by charging penalty form them.

Scope of Consumer Protection Act, 1986

  1. Coverage of Items: This act covers all the goods and services.
  2. Sectors Coverage: This act is applicable on all the sectors such as public sector, private sector and cooperative sector.
  3. Safeguard: This act protects the customer from unfair trade practices, dissatisfactory services etc.
  4. Time bound Redressal: The decision of the court comes in a very limited time period.
  5. Consumer Protection Council: Consumer protection councils were establish in order to aware the consumers about their rights and duties.

Legal Protection to Consumer

  1. The Customer Protection Act, 1986: This Act provides safety to the customer from defective products, deficient services and unfair trade practices which are pursuing in the market through three-tier mechanization.
  2. The Sales of Goods Act, 1930: This Act provides protection to the buyer at the time of sale and purchase of goods, according to the contract.
  3. The Trade Mark Act, 1999: This Act protects the consumer for wrong use of trade mark when a brand register itself under the Trade Mark Act, it becomes trade mark.
  4. The Competition Act, 2002: This Act protects the customer from the competition among the businesses in the market so that the interest of the customer do not affect.

Main Provisions of Consumer Protection Act

  1. Customer: A customer refers to any person who buys and hires or avails any goods and services for a consideration.
  2. Ground for Complaints:
  • Unfair trade practices
  • Defect in goods
  • Deficiency in services
  • Charging excess price
  1. File Complaints: One or more consumer, a register consumer association, central government and state government are eligible to file complaint.
  2. Against Whom Complaint be Filed: For defective goods, complaint files against seller or manufacturer whereas for deficiency of services, complaint files against the provider of the service.
  3. Remedies Available to Customer: The court may ask to remove the defects, replace the goods, refund the price, discontinues of unfair trade practices, payment of adequate cost from the person on against the complaint is filed.

Rights given to Consumers

  1. Right to Safety: A consumer has a right to get safety from the goods which are hazardous in nature.
  2. Right to Choose: A consumer has an absolute right to buy or avail any kind of goods or services.
  3. Right to Heard: A consumer has the right that his complaint must be heard.
  4. Right to Seek Redressal: A consumer also has a right to claim compensation from the seller.
  5. Right to Customer Education: A consumer has the right to educate himself with all the rights and duties which are available for him.

Responsibilities of Consumers

  1. Customer must Exercise his Rights: A consumer must be aware about all the right and duties which are available for him at the time of availing the benefits.
  2. Customer do not Buy Blindly: A consumer should check all the necessary details such as quality, quantity, price etc. of the goods and services before buying.
  3. Customer do not Forget to get Receipt: A consumer should not forget to get the receipt for the things which are purchased by him for it is the ultimate document which is available to file complaint if goods and services turn out to be defective.
  4. Customer do not Buy in Hurry: A consumer should give well time during purchasing the goods and should check all the details before buying.

Ways to Protect the Consumers

  1. Business Associations: Business associations such as FICCI, CII prepare a code of conduct for businesses which are to be followed by every business.
  2. Consumer Awareness: A consumer should be well aware about all the rights which are available to raise voice against unfair trade practices by the seller.
  3. Self-Regulation by Business: A business should himself regulate all the grievances of the consumers in order to make a strong consumer base.
  4. Government: Government provides protection to consumers through acts and polices framed by the central and state governments.

Juridical Machinery under Consumer Protection Act

  1. District Forum
  • Works at district level.
  • Includes a committee of three members.
  • Hears cases involving sum upto 20 lacs.
  • Complaint can be filed by consumer or consumer association.
  • If any of the party do not satisfy, he can appeal to State Commission within 30 days to challenge the order of District Forum.
  1. State Commission
  • Works at state level.
  • Includes a committee of three member, including one lady member.
  • Hears cases involving sum form 20 lacs to 1 crore.
  • Complaint can be filed by consumer or consumer association.
  • If any of the party do not satisfy, he can appeal to National Commission within 30 days to challenge the order of State Commission.
  1. National Commission
  • Works at central level.
  • Includes a committee of five members, including one lady member.
  • Hears cases involving sum which exceeds 1 crore
  • Complaint can be filed by consumer or consumer association.
  • If any of the party do not satisfy, he can appeal to Supreme Court within 30 days to challenge the order of National Commission.

You may also read Nature and Significance of Management, Principles of Management, Business Environment, Planning, Organising, Staffing, Directing, Controlling, Financial Management, Financial Market, Marketing Management & Consumer Protection Act for better understanding of the chapter and scoring higher in upcoming examination.

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