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Consumer Protection Act comes into force as government looks to empower its citizens

Saumy Deepak Tripathi
Saumy Deepak Tripathi
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The Government of India has enforced the Consumer Protection Bill, 2019 which had got the assent of President in August last year.

The act will replace the Consumer Protection Act of 1986 and will provide new rights to strengthen the consumers. The act has been formed keeping in mind the deficiencies of the previous act. It was passed in the Lok Sabha on July 30 and on 6 August in Rajya Sabha.

Features:

  • One of the most appreciated feature of the act is the establishment of Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA) which is a body formed under the Section10 (1) of the Consumer Protection Act. It has the authority to investigate matters of consumer rights through its own investigation wing.

  • Another addition has been the inclusion of stricter jail terms for matters pertaining to safety of consumer rights. A misleading advert could attract a fine of Rs. 10 and two years of imprisonment while cases related to the death of consumer can attract a Rs. 10 lakh and seven years of imprisonment which could be extended to life.

  • Earlier a consumer had to file complaints at the location where the goods or services were sold but with the latest amendment consumer can file a complaint in any district or state Consumer Commission which is nearest to them.

  • In case of unfair trade services, if the practice has lead to injuries to a consumer it will attract a fine of Rs. 5 lakh or a jail sentence of seven years or both. In case of death, the fine is Rs. 5 lakh or a jail sentence of 7 years or both.

The Act has been hailed by several advocates who said that several glaring loopholes of the previous acts have been filled by this act and with efficient execution it could be a historic act for the consumers in the country.

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