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Consumer Protection Bill, 2019: Lok Sabha takes up discussion


ANI Politics
The Lok Sabha on Tuesday took up for discussion a bill that calls for the creation of a central authority to protect, promote and enforce consumer rights.
Consumer Protection Bill, 2019, was moved for passage by the Union Minister Ramvilas Paswan amid sloganeering by the Opposition who were protesting against Unnao rape survivor accident. While addressing the House, Paswan stated that this Bill will replace the outdated Consumer Protection Act, 1986.
Jalna MP Raosaheb Danve also talked about the Bill in the lower house as Paswan was constantly interrupted by the MLAs of the opposition parties while he was addressing the House.
Danve while addressing the Parliamentarians reiterated what Paswan said that the Consumer Protection Bill, 2019, will provide for the creation of Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA) to promote, protect and enforce the rights of consumers and will also make interventions whenever necessary to prevent the unfair trade practices and initiate class-action including recall, refund and return of products.
However, the Opposition denied supporting the Bill accusing the government of trying to centralise authority and diluting powers of the state.
It should be noted that at present, the task of preventing or acting against unfair trade practices is not vested in any authority.
Participating in the debate, BJP member Rajendra Agrawal also stated that there is a need for adequate provisions to protect consumer rights when e-commerce was growing. He also cited his own example and said he had ordered a mobile phone but was delivered a box containing a stone.
Agrawal said he could eventually get his grievance addressed but wondered how such frauds could be committed.
The Consumer Protection Bill, 2019 provides for product liability action on account of harm caused to consumers due to defective action or on account of harm caused to consumers due to defective product or deficiency in services.
It also provides for "mediation" as an Alternate Dispute Resolution Mechanism. The Bill seeks to replace the Consumer Protection Act 1986 and address the constantly emerging vulnerabilities of the consumers to the new forms of unfair trade and unethical business practices.
The emergence of global supply chains, rise in international trade and rapid development of e-commerce has led to new delivery systems for goods and services and have provided opportunities to the consumer.
However, misleading advertisements, telemarketing, multi-level marketing, direct selling, and e-commerce also pose new challenges and require swift executive interventions to prevent consumer detriment.
The Bill also simplifies the consumer dispute adjudication process of consumer dispute redress agencies.

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First Published: Jul 30 2019 | 1:34 PM IST

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