According to the Consumer Protection Act 1986, the consumer right is referred to as ‘right to be protected against marketing of goods and services which are hazardous to life and property’.It is applicable to specific areas like healthcare, pharmaceuticals.
The right to information is defined as ‘the right to be informed about the quality, quantity, potency, purity, standard and price of goods or services, as the case may be so as to protect the consumer against unfair trade practices’ in the Consumer Protection Act of 1986.
Consumerism is a social as well as economic order which encourages the buying of goods and services in ever-greater amounts. This term is sometimes associated with critics of consumption beginning with Thorstein Veblen. Veblen's topic of examination.
Consumer Rights in India
When one plans to get involved into a contract or agreement for buying or hiring any good or services, both the parties are bound by terms and conditions of the contract as well as rules of parliament. Theconsumer rights are also defined in terms of legislation like Sale of Goods Act and Supply of Goods and services etc. They put terms into a contract which cannot be excluded or taken away nor can be waivered even.
There is a quite good reason behind these terms. The consumerhas a disadvantage when he goes for buying goods, and to come over this imbalance, the legislation described before as well as some other legislation have been enforced.
The seller also has some terms to follow, for instance, the right to return goods that have not been used,within a specified time for a refund if one does not like the product he has purchased. These terms are additional to the statutory rights, which are there and cannot be taken away.
Customers consist of a number of consumer rights and it can be seen that one’s statutory rights are more "powerful" as compared to the contractual rights one has agreed to and therefore one should use this as opposed to having a warranty (one should be aware of that a warranty might cover something that GA cannot protect you from). If a dispute pops up (faulty goods are used as an example), one does not have to argue that he has a contract that claims that goods should have satisfactory quality –which legislation already implies. If one is to argue some contractual term, it is required for him to prove it.
Besides, using the consumer rights or legislative rights compels the store to take the law for consideration, and not act in the way that they are doing one a favor by offering some remedy out of the goodness of their own hearts i.e. replacing or repairing or refunding.For example, one buys a faulty mobile phone back to a store, and the reason for return is put forward as "refund under 14 day store policy. Then, answer is big NO! , and the reason is that the law was not complied with.
If one has a dispute with a retailer, he should also inform it to Consumer Direct. As much as this service is disliked, it does have any useful function - it gathers data on complaints that Trading Standards can have. Before consumer direct, it is difficult for TSOs to have an idea of where the problems arose. Now, with a national database, this kind of data can be collected and used and what else can it be used for?
The effect of this is pretty important. However, initially, if any action was taken against a retailer, it used to be in the civil courts by the buyer, and was sorted on the individual basis. It is possible that a prosecution might be brought against the seller that depends on the problem, but this would have happened on the individual complaint. If there are a number of considerably small complaints against a retailer, then the actions can be taken as a whole and there are very high penalties for that.
There is a need of awareness of consumer rights and it depends upon one that whether he follows advice and get his problemssolved, but one should be aware that it might bet one’s cotton socks that it would happen over and again. It can happen with anyone or everyone, or one can take a stand, enforce his rights and make the companies behave for doing what they ought to do in the first place.