World Consumer Rights Day: Important Facts

World Consumer Rights Day 2023 was celebrated on March 15 with the theme “Empowering consumers through clean energy transitions.” The Department of Consumer Affairs marked this day by leveraging technology to minimize the dependence on traditional energy sources and promote a rapid transition to clean energy solutions that are sustainable, secure, affordable, and accessible to consumers.

World Consumer Rights Day: Understanding its History

World Consumer Rights Day has been celebrated since March 15, 1983, with the goal of empowering and protecting consumers worldwide. It originated from US President John F. Kennedy’s address to Congress on March 15, 1962, where he highlighted the importance of consumer rights and was the first world leader to do so. Since then, organizations such as Consumer International commemorate the day by hosting various activities and campaigns to defend consumer rights.

Consumer Rights in India: Enactment of the Consumer Protection Act

The Indian Parliament passed the Consumer Protection Act on December 9, 1986, to give customers more power and create consumer councils, forums, and appellate courts for the resolution of consumer complaints. This Act significantly improved the rights of consumers in India, giving them protection against unfair trade practices, access to goods and services at competitive prices, and the right to be informed about the quality, standard, and price of goods and services.

The Six Basic Consumer Rights Embedded in the Act

The Consumer Protection Act, 1986, embedded six basic consumer rights that serve as a guide for the Indian consumers. The first right is the right to be heard at an appropriate forum. The second is the right to seek redressal in case of unfair trade practices. The third right is the right to consumer education, which involves spreading awareness among consumers about their rights and the methods to seek redressal. The fourth is the right to goods and services at competitive prices, which protects consumers from being exploited by unscrupulous traders. The fifth right is the right to be informed about the quality, potency, purity, standard, and price of goods and services before purchasing them. Finally, the sixth right is the right to be protected against wrong marketing of goods and services that are hazardous to the life and property of consumers.





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