‘Consumers have right to reject, seek redress for substandard goods, services’
Eastern Mirror Desk
Dimapur, July 3: A seminar advocating consumer rights was organised by the department of Legal Metrology and Consumer Protection in collaboration with the Dimapur District Legal services Authority (DDLSA).
The programme was conducted on July 3 at the Niathu Resort in Dimapur.
Some of the imperatives that the programme highlighted were that consumers do not have to accept substandard products, billing errors, poor service, and late delivery of goods or services.
The main objective of the programme was to educate consumers in their rights and to make known their objection against goods or services that are substandard.
Pukhayi Sumi, advisor for Legal Metrology & Consumer Protection, Food and Civil Supplies, spoke at the event. He said every individual is a consumer by birth.
Sumi reminded businessmen and traders about their duty to deliver genuine quality products without denying the rights of the consumer.
Sumi also noted that Naga businessmen have the mentality to want to become ‘rich’ overnight, which can affect services. The legislator explained that many people are referred to hospitals outside the state due to consumption of poor quality food products.
Highlighting the functions of the government’s consumers’ agency, Sumi said the department is there to safeguard the rights of consumers by enforcing the various acts and rules that ensure quality goods and services besides ensuring the rights of the consumer.
“The state commission and district forum were set up to address the complaints made by consumers against unfair practices,” Sumi said.
According to Sumi, the commission in Nagaland has disposed 150 consumer cases while the district forum has disposed 635 cases in the state till March 31, 2019. The department has also verified 13, 500 kinds of weighing and measuring instruments.
Delivering the keynote address was chief judicial magistrate and secretary of the DDLSA, Ajongba Imchen. He said that the greatest weapon citizens have in their hands to eradicate corruption are the anti-corruption ombudsman Lokayukta, the Right to Information Act and the Consumer Protection Act of 1986.
Terming the Indian constitution the best and ‘most beautiful’ for giving equal opportunities to all the citizens of the country, Imchen referred to the special provisions just for the Naga people that is Article 371A.
“Article 371A is a gift to Naga people but despite that, the state is still lacking behind in many sectors when compared to other states,” Imchen said.
There are established procedures in all the departments and institutions where the elected members and officials must uphold the constitution and protect consumers, he added.