When we talk about consumers right , India does not exactly has a glorified past, in fact India
had worse consumer laws in consumer rights, from the advent of our constitution till uptil the
1980s when the act came into the picture there was hardly much in terms of consumer protection
, but since pre historic times the most learned philosophers and thinkers had written about
consumer rights and service but all of this was absent and the socio economic status of the
country had gone down until 1986 when the government formulgated and enunciated the law and
the act came out to be “ Consumer protection act , 1986”
Section 2 of the act defines(1) consumer which means A consumer is one that buys good for
consumption and not for the resale or commercial purpose. The consumer also hires service for
consideration. The basic aim of the act was to safeguard the rights of the consumer to keep their best
interests at par. The act made sure that the business of selling the produce and consumption by the
consumers go hand in and the consumers are not exploited in the hands of the money suckling
businessmen. This right helped to educate the consumer on the right and responsibilities of being a
consumer and how to seek help or justice when faced exploitation as a consumer. It teaches them to
make right choices and know the right from wrong. Consumer protection act specified various
practices to be followed by both the consumer and the producer under the consumer act . It also
established a three tier grievance redressal system . The government urged the consumers to know
their rights and a motto of “ jago grahak jaogo” was circulated Though , the act surely exposed the
customers to new opportunities but it also exposed them to new problems as it seemed the act was an
insufficient piece of legislature , it has various problems in its implementation hence it cannot keep
up with the market dynamics and was failing so in order to keep the idea of welfare going an
amendment in the form of consumer protection act, 1986 was introduced replacing the three decade
old consumer protection act, 1986( 2).
The act came as a refreshing relief to the consumers as the new act will be more holistic and ironclad,
and are framed in the best interest of the consumers . The Act proposes the creation of a Central
Authority for the Protection of Consumers (CCPA) to encourage, protect and enforce consumer
rights and intervene in situations of unfair trade, and most importantly The Act provides for a
streamlined process for dispute settlement, with a provision for mediation and e-filing(3)
. Instead of the location where the company or goods were delivered, customers may file complaints at a local or state consumer commission that is nearest to their home. Consumers may bring adulterated and
bogus goods producers and sellers to court, and demand compensation . Which means the consumers
have easier access to the authorities and will be more vigilant and demanding for their rights . The
new amendment also introduces various new rights and regulations which will be of immense help
not only now but also in the long run.
This act has brought various positive changes which were the dire need of this country and it benefits
not only the consumers but also the businessmen in various aspects so now it is upto the people of
this country to accept the changes for their betterment and implement them in their daily lives and
make their contribution in the great flow of positive changes which will make our country a better
place to live in.
2The Consumer Protection Act, 2019, No. 144, Acts of parliament,2019(India).
3 Gazette of India" (PDF). egazette.nic.in. Retrieved 17 June 2020.
Author-Aeshna raghuwanshi, Content writer, Legal Eagle.