Yojana December 2017 Comprehensive Summary / Gist: Consumer Awareness (Download PDF)

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NEXT ISSUE – Banking Sector Reforms, Key Issues: Consumer awareness on services is complex – hospital bills, threatens of legal action, evidence of consent, Consumer rights and consumer protection (2500 yrs ago – Kautilya), Consumer Protection Act, 1986 – protect for both goods and services.

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Yojana December 2017 Summary: Consumer Awareness

Dr. Manishika Jain explains Yojana December 2017 Summary: Consumer Awareness

👌 implies important for Objective Questions/MCQ

📝 implies important for Subjective Questions

📹 implies covered in Videos or Upcoming Videos

  • 👌 Standards like ISI mark, Hallmark for jewellery, Silkmark for silk & RERA – landmark regulatory measure in real estate
  • Consumer redressal
  • National Consumer Disputes Redressal Authority

Consumer Protection

Promote culture

Good governance

Protect and promote consumer rights

📝 Consumer Protection Act, 1986 – punitive and preventive, section empower consumers 6 basic rights

  • Right to safety

  • Right to information

  • Right to choose

  • Right to be heard

  • Right to redressal

  • Right to education

Provides 3 tier redressal machinery against unfair trade practices for speedy, simple and inexpensive redressal to consumer grievances

Free market economy functions well with educated consumer. Education gives balance b/w producer and consumer (make cogent choice and protect from trade abuse)

Jago Grahak Jago – multimedia awareness campaign

Food – Food Safety & Standard Standards Authority of India (FSSAI)

Financial – RBI

Medicines – National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA)

👌 Consumer awareness campaign implemented through Directorate of Audio and Visual Publicity (DAVP) – in fairs, festivals in rural and backward areas

Commercial developments promote artificial needs

Absence of consumer demand for quality due to lack of awareness

BIS act, comprehensive amendment to existing CPA, 1986

📝 Consumer Protection Bill, 2015 & Bureau of Indian Standards Act, 2016 features

  • Establishment of exclusive agency called the Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA), which will protect and enforce the rights of consumers

  • Provision for product liability

  • Provision for mediation as Alternate Dispute Redressal (ADR) mechanism

  • Declare unfair terms of contract as null and void

  • Penalize celebrity endorsements for false and misleading ads

  • Simplify adjudication process – increase minimum number of members in consumer for a for quick disposal of complaints, constitute circuit bench, reform process of appointment, enable members to file complaint electronically

  • Deemed admissibility of complaints if question of admissibility is not decided within specified period of 21 days

Standards of Weights and Measurement Act, 1956 – 1st act based on metric system & international system of units recognized by International Organization of Legal Metrology

Legal Metrology Act, 2009 repeals and replaces Standard of Weights and Measures Act, 1976 & Standard of Weights and Measures (Enforcement) Act, 1985 – responsibility shared b/w center and state on technical regulation, precision laboratory facilities etc.

Legal standards of weights and measures of the States and Union Territories are calibrated in the Regional Reference Standard Laboratories (RRSL) located at Ahmedabad, Bhubaneswar, Bangalore, Faridabad, Guwahati, Nagpur & Varanasi.

  • National Consumer Helpline with toll free number 1800 - 11 - 4000 or 14404 – advice, information and guidance to empower consumers – partnered 325 companies for online resolution of complaints

  • 👌 INGRAM (Integrated Grievance Redressal Mechanism) – launched to bring consumers, state, private companies on single platform

  • State Consumer Helpline: Encourage Alternate Dispute Redressal (ADR)

  • Smart Consumer Application: Mobile application that scan bar code of product to get all details on product

  • 👌 GAMA (Grievances against Misleading Advertisements): to address issues of misleading advertisement

  • Online Dispute Resolution; Online Consumer Mediation Center established at National Law School, Bangalore to resolve disputes, innovative technology to resolve conflicts

  • Online Consumer Communities: To discuss governance and daily issues

  • Campaign on Internet Safety: India has largest internet users – organize “Digital Literacy, Safety and Security Workshops”

👌 Consumer protection enactments pre-independence are

  • Sale of Goods Act, 1930

  • Agriculture Produce (Grading and Marketing) Act, 1837

  • Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940

Consumer protection is linked to Competition Policy as both intend to promote consumer welfare

Consumer Protection in India

  • Started in USA in 1960s – Ralph Nader championed consumers against manufacturers & John F. Kennedy in 1962 gave 4 basic rights – right to safety, right to be informed, right to choose and right to be heard
  • 15 March – World’s Consumer Rights Day
  • April 16, 1985 – UN adopted guidelines for consumer protection (strong movement in USA, UK, France, Germany, Sweden, Norway)
Image of Major Consumer Protection Laws In India

Image of Major Consumer Protection Laws In India

Image of Major Consumer Protection Laws In India

Historical Development

  • Measures for protection and promotion of consumer interest

  • Establish Department of Consumer Affairs in 1991

  • Establish Consumer Welfare Fund in 1992

  • Establish Competition Commission of India to prevent anti-competitive business practices in 2003

  • Set up FSSAI in 2006

  • Proposal to establish Central Consumer Protection Authority

Need in India – no sample, unified agency to redress consumer grievances

Consumer Protection Act, 1986 – later amended thrice in 1991, 1993 and 2002

File complaint – consumer, consumer association, central govt. , 1 or more consumers and legal heir or representative of deceased consumer

Consumer – term include any person buying, agreeing to buy, hires or avails service for non-commercial purpose

Ground to File Complaint – unfair trade practice, defect of good, deficiency in service, change price in excess of price fixed under law, offer hazardous goods or services

👌 Where to file – District Forum (officer of rank of district judge & 2 members – one is lady member, upto Rs. 20 lakhs), State Commission (retired judge of high court, Rs. 20 lakh to Rs. 1 crore), National Commission (retired judge of Supreme Court, More than Rs. 1 crore) – these bodies are quasi-judicial & heard by person from legal background known as consumer courts – vested with powers of civil court to hear and enforce orders; follow principle of natural justice

Procedure – written complaint without advocate, small fee proportional to compensation

Relief to Victim – removal or replacement of defect, refund, payment of compensation, payment of punitive damage, cease and desist, withdraw hazardous goods, compensation to unidentifiable person, corrective advertisement to neutralize effect of misleading advertisement & payment of cost to either party

Justice Delivery for Low Income Consumers

  • UN Guidelines for Consumer Protection, 1985 later expanded by Economic and Social Council through resolution of 1999 – enable consumers for fair, inexpensive and accessible procedures
  • Later guidelines in 2015 – fair, transparent, inexpensive, accessible, speedy and effective dispute resolution without unnecessary cost burden

📝 ADR Types

  • Out of court resolution
  • Laid under section 89 of Code of Civil Procedures inserted by Amendment Act 46 of 1999 – following recommendation of Malimath Committee & Legal Authorities Act, 1987
Image of Five Types of ADR

Image of Five Types of ADR

Image of Five Types of ADR

  • Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987 – operational through notification in year 1995 lays Lok Adalats consisting of retired judicial officers
  • Use of section 89 (mechanism to settle dispute out of court) is held mandatory under Salem Advocates Bar Association vs. Union of India
  • ADR is mandatory in Afcons Infrastructure Ltd. & Anr. Vs. Cherian Varkey Construction Co. Ltd.
  • Case of medical negligence finalized after 23 years – Bijoy Singh Roy by LR vs Biswanath Das & Ors
  • Consumer Fora – to monitor speedy resolution of disputes and avail ADR mechanism
  • Consumer International – federation of 250 consumer group associated with UN declared 2018 as year of e-commerce with theme “Better Digital World”
  • UK – Consumer Rights Act, 2015 – includes digital content along with goods and services
  • Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) for speedy resolution in cross-border disputes

Keeping Pace with Technological Dynamics

  • Digital payments like BHIM, UPI, IMPS
  • Digital medium and mobile transactions
  • 40 % population now uses internet worldwide
  • Consumer voluntary participation is motivated
  • Address issues of data breach, stealing of digital records, losing information for financial loss
  • Listen, understand consumer demands with consumer-centric approach, and respond to their expectations
  • Digital education benefits to rule out duplicate and facilitate e-commerce – accurate information about products

Consumer Inclusion in Financial Services

  • UN Guidelines of 2015 – 1st time includes financial services for fair treatment, fight abuse and frauds
  • Global financial crisis and impact on OECD G20 to evolve high-level principles on Financial Consumer Protection of 2011 – consumer confidence and trust in market
  • Banks alone control 64 % of total assets
  • 👌 Banking Ombudsman appointed by RBI in each state listens to consumers and redresses them

Old Gives Way to New

  • New problems – online fraud, identity theft, ATM card skimming, credit card cloning
  • Consumer Courts – simple, quick, inexpensive redressal
  • 2013 – Indian Institute of Public Administration released report on impact and effectiveness of CPA – 10.2 % complaints are decided in 3 months and 17.8 % complaints decided in 5 months; in 40 % of district consumer forum less than 15 cases were filed per month
  • It evaluated impact of CPA in 10 districts of 5 states – Karnataka, Gujarat, UP, Odisha and Tripura
  • Lacunae – absence of mechanism to enforce rights under law and prevent violations

Consumers as Co-Protector in Health Services

  • Information asymmetry where one party has more information affects the seller or buyer alike and pose a risk of market failure
  • Health services under section 2 (1) of CPA, 1986
  • Distinction between contract of services (party rendering service is not subject to detailed control but professional skill) and contract of service (obligation to obey orders in work to be performed)
  • People are co-producers of health services - behavior (alcohol consumption) determines health status
  • Public provision of health services and regulation of health services
  • Ensure affordable cost
  • Indian Public Health Standards & Clinical Establishment (Registration and Regulation) Act, 2010 – minimum standards of health facilities
  • 👌 National Accreditation Board of Hospitals and Healthcare Providers (NABH) – give accreditation to healthcare facilities
  • Drug (Price Control) Order DPCO, 2013 – regulate price of essential medicines and drugs – atleast for medicines listed in Essential Drug List (EDL) patient does not end up paying high cost
  • 👌 Health Education – learning experience to help individuals and communities improve their health
  • 👌 Health Literacy – cognitive and social skills to determine ability of individuals to gain access to information to promote good health beyond reading pamphlets and making appointments
  • Adopt holistic approach, engage civil society and use emerging strengths
  • Looking forward for Universal Health Coverage (UHC) with active participation of people

GST: Impact on Consumers

  • More than 50 % goods and services come under 18%
  • 4 slabs are 0%, 12%, 18 % and 28%
  • Cab booking – rate from 6 % to 5%
  • Airlines from 12 % to 5 % except for business class
  • Movie ticket at 18 % upto Rs. 100 and 28 % above it
  • 3 % GST on gold and 5 % on making charges
  • Primary education and healthcare is exempted from GST
  • Hotel with room above Rs. 5000 will be 28 % GST
  • Enterprises with turnover of Rs. 20 lakh and more will have to follow GST
Image of Lower Prices Under GST

Image of Lower Prices Under GST

Image of Lower Prices Under GST

Educating the Rural Customer

  • Rising income level and monthly per capita income has increased 17 % b/w FY10 and FY12
  • Spending on food items increased from 40 % to more than 50%
  • Consumer courts don’t require lawyers and hence is cheap process
  • Rural area accounts for ½ of economy and rural markets have potential to reach $500 billion by 2020
  • With growing income, corporate houses enter rural markets
  • Insurance, banking, electricity and banking expanded to rural areas
  • Agmark – quality of agricultural produce – pulses, species, vegetable oils, wheat products, milk products
  • Doordarshan channel – DD Kisan for farmers in 2015
  • 1986 – Amendment in Prevention of Food Adulteration Act – authorized every citizen to become food inspector and participate in food safety
  • 👌 PMGDISHA – PM Gramin Digital Saksharta Abhiyan – make 6 crore rural households digitally literate by March 2019
  • National Digital Literacy Mission and its implementation by NASSCOM, Intel and HP

Quality Assurance for Consumers

  • Indian Standards Institution (ISI) registered under Societies Registration Act 1860 as National Standards Body of India – prepare and promote standards for adoption by Indian industry
  • Later expanded to include Product certification by ISI Act, 1952
  • BIS Act, 1986 – standards for safe, reliable and quality goods
  • Product certification scheme of BIS – third party guarantee of quality, safety and reliability
  • BIS certified jewelers can do hallmarking. Recognition of Assaying & Hallmarking center is done against IS 15820: 2009
  • 👌 Mobile App – CARE by BIS – access information and lodge complaint against ISI Marked product or hallmarked item

📝 Customer Satisfaction: Mantra of Banking Management

  • RBI framed Charter of Customer Rights specifying 5 basic rights that bank customers enjoy. RBI advised Indian Bank Association and Banking Codes and Standards Board of India to formulate model “Model Customer Rights Policy”
  1. Right to fair treatment – fair relation between bank and customer, staff attends customers
  2. Right to transparency, fair and honest dealing – ethical, display tariff schedule & public domain
  3. Right to suitability – for customers
  4. Right to privacy – keep customer information confidential
  5. Right to Grievance Redressal and Compensation - hold financial services accountable for products offered
  • Acknowledge complaint within 3 days and try to resolve in 30 days
  • Complaint redressal process is part of any corporate entity
  • Listen to problem, identify, sympathize, show empathy, thank customer, act quickly
  • Classify complaints (violate regulatory law, internal bank policy or customer service issues), analyze trend, take management action, improve complaint process
  • Complaints received under PM Jan Dhan Yojana – refusal to open bank account, non-received of Rupay card, non-activation of card, accidental insurance claim
  • Banking Ombudsman – senior official appointed by RBI to redress customer complaint against deficiency in certain banking services

📹 Corridor Concept to Road Development

📝 Bharatmala Pariyojana – new 24, 800 km arrived at based on OD (origin destination) surveys and traffic assessments

Already done under NHDP, Golden Quadrilateral and North-South, East-West corridor

  • Project selection – based on OD traffic & segment specific traffic density

  • Execution mechanism and financing – push towards PPP

  • Land acquisition and environmental clearances

  • Bolder visioning

Image of Bharatmala Pariyojana

Image of Bharatmala Pariyojana

Image of Bharatmala Pariyojana

  • Highway work worth Rs. 8 lakh crore scheduled before 2018
  • Umbrella program for highway sector with efficiency on road traffic movement
  • 50 national corridors as opposed to 6 at present
  • Help move 70 - 80 % freight in contrast to 40 % now
  • Connect 550 districts by NH linkages
  • Positive impact on Logistics Performance Index
  • Phase I: 10, 000 km of balanced road works along with 24, 800 kms in Phase I at cost of Rs. 1, 00, 000 crore
  • Identified 26, 200 km of economic corridor with heavy freight of which 9, 000 km will be taken for development along with 8, 000 km of Inter-corridors, 7, 500 km of feeder corridors, 3300 km of border roads, 2000 km of international connectivity, 2100 km of coastal roads and 2000 km of port connectivity

Invest India: An Exemplar of New India

  • Proactive agency for professional support and hand holding services to potential investors from overseas – understand and analyse the business and facilitate and fasten the journey
  • Make India most attractive destination for FDI inflow – convert red tape to red carpet
  • 110 team members have professionals from ex-investment bankers and management consultants
  • Judged as winner at UNCTAD investment promotion awards in 2016
  • Model that pivots around individuals and prioritize teamwork
  • Indo-UK institute of Health is creating integrated medicities across 11 states
  • 👌 Danish wind turbine company Vestas manufacturing blades in Gujarat – fastest in firm’s history to beat earlier record of China
  • Answer 1, 00, 000 queries from investors – cover 47 sectors and 115 countries
  • Facilitates $80 billion to cover 300 cases and employ 7 lakh individuals

Miscellaneous

Largest ever survey of 25 lakh students

  • National Achievement Survey

  • 45 questions for class 3 and 5

  • 60 questions for class 8

  • Reflected Learning Outcomes developed by NCERT

👌 MSME Samadhan

  • MSME Delayed Payment portal

  • Monitor delayed payment in effective manner

Excerpts from PM Address to International Conference on Consumer Protection

  • India is first few nation to enact CPA, in 1986 just 1 year after UN Guidelines being adopted

  • Protection of consumer interests

  • Enact RERA to protect home buyers

  • GST has brought new business culture

  • Capacity of National Consumer Helpline has increased 4 times

  • Affordable medicine to poor by Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Pariyojana

  • Monetary savings in consumer interest – Ujala – reduce cost of LED and electricity bills

  • UPI boosted e-commerce

👌 Water Audit

  • Global problem of water shortage and demand to exceed supply by 40 % by 2030

  • Minimize loss, optimize use and enable conservation by reduce, reuse and recycle

  • Steps Involved: Water Supply & Usage study, process study, quality of water, system audit, discharge analysis & water audit report

  • Irrigation accounts for 83 % of current level of water utilization

NPP

  • National Power Portal

  • Centralized platform for collation and dissemination of Indian Power Sector information

  • Centralized system for Indian power sector which facilitates online data capture from generation, transmission and distribution utilities – by GIS enabled navigation system; 👌 power apps like TARANG, UJALA, VIDYUT PRAVAH, GARV, URJA and MERIT

  • 👌 Integrated with Central Electricity Authority (CEA), Power Finance Corporation (PFC) abd Rural Electrification Corporation (REC)

Indian State Level Disease Burden Report

  • Per person burden due to infectious disease like diahorrea & TB is 7 to 9 times higher in Bihar, Odisha, UP, Rajasthan, MP, Assam and Jharkhand while non-communicable disease burden is higher in some other states

  • Joint initiative of ICMR, Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) and Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) in collaboration with Ministry of Health and Family Welfare

Northeast

  • NE to get India’s 1st Air dispensary - It is based in helicopter & DoNER contributed Rs. 25 crore as part of project

  • Emerging startup destination

  • North East Council (NEC) to be reoriented & develop state of art resource center for North East States

  • 3 mega food parks in Assam, Tripura & Mizoram with 50 species of bamboo, 14 of banana and 17 of citrus fruits & huge production of pineapples and oranges

Jammu

  • 👌 Tourist spot at Suchetgarh in Jammu

  • Protection and preservation of wildlife

  • Disaster management training

  • 👌 Biaras Small Hydro Power Project in Biaras Drass, Kargil was commissioned in 2017 – 1st project under Ladakh Renewable Energy Initiative

👌 Trains between Indian & Bangladesh

  • 1st train – Kolkata to Dhaka (Maitree express in 2008)

  • 2nd train – Kolkata – Khulna (Bandhan express in 2017) – weekly service with end to end immigration and custom clearance

  • Bhairab bridge (on Meghna river at $75 million) and Titas bridge (on Titas River at $25 million) built under assistance of GoI

- Published/Last Modified on: December 29, 2017

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