Consumers yet to reap fruits of new legislation
- Central and State govt need to frame rules to provide jurisdiction to district level consumer forums though the new law came into force on Aug 9, 2019
- Lot of complaints have been pending in the absence of rules
Srikakulam: The consumers have not been getting benefits under the new Consumer Protection Act, 2019 in the absence of rules regarding jurisdiction to district-level consumer forums. The Act had come into force from August 9, 2019 but consumers are unable to enjoy its fruits.
In this Act, Sections 34 (1), 2 (a) to (d) provide that district-level forums shall have jurisdiction to entertain the complaints irrespective of place of cause of action.
The complainant can file complaint before the district-level consumer grievances redressal forum where he/she resides or carries business or personally works for gain or having any branch or franchisee within the district. Pecuniary jurisdiction was fixed for district-level consumer grievances redressal forums as up to Rs 1 crore.
The Central government need to frame rules regarding providing jurisdiction to district-level consumer grievances redressal forums under section 102 of the Act.
This section provided powers to the government to make rules. These rules are essential for the district-level consumer grievances redressal forums to entertain complaints from the complainants. The state governments concerned are also needed to frame miscellaneous rules for the implementation of the new enactment.
"Rules are essential for implementation of any enactment and farming of rules is the responsibility of the governments. Without rules, judicial or quasi judicial bodies are unable to entertain cases or complaints from the aggrieved persons.
Situation is same for the present Consumer Protection Act, 2019 in the absence of rules," Aguru Umamaheswara Rao, a senior advocate of Srikakulam said.
A complaintaint, Rekhana Eswara Rao, a retired headmaster, told The Hans India that he has been unable to get his complaint registered in Srikakulam regarding a hospital in Vizag.
"I have filed a complaint before the district-level consumer grievances redressal forum at Srikakulam in January this year regarding poor medical services provided to me by a corporate hospital in Visakhapatnam. As I am residing at Srikakulam I filed a complaint here but it is yet to get registered and number was not allotted for it," he said.