Consumer cases on a decline; fora at a loss
In spite of reports of people getting justice after filing petitions of lost bags in transit, spurious medicines, over priced goods and several other anomalies, the number of cases before the consumer forum is on the decline.
Hyderabad: In spite of reports of people getting justice after filing petitions of lost bags in transit, spurious medicines, over priced goods and several other anomalies, the number of cases before the consumer forum is on the decline. The reasons cited for the dip in cases are lack of staff, consumers not choosing to file cases due to indifference, laziness or inherent flaws in the system.
Implementation of law is not happening as it should. If a person is punished after his fraud is proved there has to be support from the police department. "People are being discouraged to approach Consumer Forum and file cases. Thus, the number of cases registered are decreasing every year," said Nimma Narayana, the President of Consumer Forum III.
"Consumer Forum is acting quickly in solving cases in no time – any case filed in the forum should be solved within 90 days. Though the count of the cases registered was low comparatively over the period 2015-2019, a unique variety of complaints are are being filed.
We very happy and glad to deal such cases," said Gopi Kishore, a senior advocate. At the end of 2019 first quarter, 151 cases were registered, according to the Telangana Consumer forum, Counting Consumer forum I, Consumer forum II and Consumer forum III. Consumers currently approaching the forum to file cases on builders, construction contractors, ponzy schemes, and policy-related issues.
Large cases against automobile companies and club membership were filed in the first quarter. Speaking of the graph of cases from 2015 to 2019, there has been a drastic change in use of various sections of law has been noted. In 2015, numerous cases were filed against real estate, customer service dis-satisfaction and some serious cases. In 2019, cases related health and insurance, schemes and policies were in prominence. At least, one case regarding policy is being filed per day, says practising advocates.
Every case has its own importance. Many consumers choose not to file case due to lack of time. They do not take into considerations that not more than 3 months is taken to dispose of any case. In the year 2019, 48 cases have so far been registered.
Cases in the consumer forum against the companies are more on account of negligence, which affects consumers. Recently, Bata company has been fined Rs 9,000 for forcing a customer to purse Rs 3 carry bag. Bata is promoting its company on both sides of carry bag and still selling it for a price. It's indeed a very big victory for the consumer. Now, no company can charge for providing carry bags on which they promote themselves.