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Consumer Court states dual pricing in multiplexes illegal

Consumer Court states dual pricing in multiplexes illegal
Highlights

The Vijayawada Consumer Forum came down heavily on the multiplexes for selling the food and beverages at exorbitant prices and imposed heavy fine for...

Vijayawada: The Vijayawada Consumer Forum came down heavily on the multiplexes for selling the food and beverages at exorbitant prices and imposed heavy fine for violating the laws here on Thursday.

For the first time in the history of Andhra Pradesh allowing the media--both print and electronic--inside the forum premises and delivering the judgment in Telugu, Forum president R Madhava Rao flanked by the Forum members Srinivas and Subbaramamma, announced that the five complainants should be paid the compensation of Rs 5,000 each and Rs 130 which the multiplex managements collected extra with nine per cent interest.

The Forum president also imposed a fine of Rs 25 lakh on the multiplexes at the rate of Rs 5 lakh for each complainant to be paid into the account of Consumer Welfare Fund which would be used for the welfare of consumers.

Referring to the complaints, Forum president R Madhava Rao said that it is high time the exorbitant charges being collected by the multiplex managements needed to be curbed. He instructed the multiplex managements to sell the food and beverages at the market price. "The maximum retail price of the food packets and beverages should be printed on the package as per the requirement of the Legal Metrology Department," he added.

Stating that the dual pricing policy is illegal, he said that the complainants represented by Consumers Guidance Society’s secretary Dr Ch Divakar Babu rightly presented various settled laws which proved beyond reasonable doubt that the dual pricing of commodities is illegal.

He instructed the managements to display the prices of the commodities prominently and provide drinking water to the audience at easily reachable points.

In far-reaching consequences, the Forum president instructed the managements to allow the audience to bring in packaged commodities and beverages including drinking water.

The Forum also announced that though they are not party to the consumer complaint, rest of the multiplexes and cinema theatres should also obey the orders to allow packed food packages into the movie house.

The Forum instructed to the Controller of Legal Metrology to prominently display the name, phone number and WhatsApp number of the official concerned to whom the audience could lodge a complaint with. He also instructed to the Controller of Legal Metrology to strict implement the rules on packaged commodities in all the multiplexes throughout Andhra Pradesh. “The complaints and grievances should be registered and redressed in the prescribed time period and they should be preserved for further inspection in future,” he said.

The Forum president said that the order should be implemented in two months from the date of delivery.

9 vij 3 to 6 Vijayawada Consumer Forum President R Madhava Rao flanked by members Srinivas and Subbaramamma announcing the order imposing penalty on Multiplex managements for the first time in the presence of media and fist time in Telugu in Vijayawada on Thursday ( Hans photo Ch Venkata Mastan)

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