Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government is developing a new mobile application to tackle fraud against consumers. The app will enable consumers to give suggestions and allow them to register complaints regarding packaged commodities.
According to a report published in LiveMint, Delhi’s food and supplies minister, Imran Hussain, stated that the mobile app will address the complaints and suggestions within 48 hours.
The report added that he directed officials to ensure consumers are not overcharged during the festival season for packaged commodities. Officials have been asked to make regular visits, check instances of overcharging and take appropriate action against the defaulters as per law.
Hussain added that officials are to regularly monitor that the Packaged Commodity Rules are followed strictly by shopkeepers, manufacturers, and dealers.
The Delhi government is currently reviewing the functioning of the Weights and Measures (Legal Metrology) department at present, said the report.
Apart from the upcoming mobile app, consumer protection laws have been established to protect people from unfair business practices, defective products, and dangerous goods and services. These laws play a pivotal role in a reliable market economy. One law that protects consumers in India is the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. It was amended in 2002.
Objectives of the Consumer Protection Act:
- Protecting consumers against the marketing of dangerous goods
- Assure, wherever possible, access to an authority of goods at competitive prices
- Inform about the quality, quantity, purity, price, and standard of goods
- Consumer education
- Seek redressal against unfair trade practices
How and when to complain?
Under the Consumer Protection Act, 1986, a consumer can raise a complaint:
a) if the goods bought by them or agreed to be bought suffer one or more defects
b) any trader or service provider opts for unfair trade practice or a restrictive trade practice
c) offering goods to the public for sale which will be hazardous to life and safety when used
d) the services hired or availed of suffer from a deficiency in any respect
The consumer must file any complaint regarding a good or service with the District Forum along with a fee. On receiving a complaint, the District Forum may reject or approve it, usually within 21 days from the date of complaint. A copy of the complaint will reach the opposite party for approval to be made within 45 days.