Online shopping is always vulnerable to substandard products, false deliveries and other frauds. Attractive sales, influencing and misleading advertisements and social media posts, attract thousand of buyers every day. There are countless cases of online fraud reported in India, where the online buyers are being fooled by the online sellers. For instance, a girl was delivered with two useless stones instead of the iPod which she ordered from a well-known online store and paid Rs. 20,000 for the same.
The increasing trend of online shopping and sharp growth of online industry has made it necessary to offer some kind of security and protection to the online buyers. The minister of consumer affairs, food and public distribution, Ram Vilas Paswan has proposed changes in the existing Consumer Laws to ensure online consumer’s protection in India. These amendments will lead to the formation of the National Consumers Protection Authority, a regulatory body to protect Indian consumers from false and unfair trade practices. Once this proposal gets the approval, consumers located in any part of the country will be able to approach their local consumer court anytime against any service provider or goods. Consumer Protection Laws will also cover online sales and will provide protection to online buyers.
Some of the salient features of the proposal are:
- A regulatory body called National Consumers Protection Authority will be created
- Non-Advocates will be allowed to plead before the district consumer forums
- A legal tool called Class Action Suits will be provided to the customers
- A product liability clause will be included.
This initiative will help the government to keep a check on E-tailers and will ensure customer protection in online sales. The bill will be sent to the cabinet in October in the winter session of the parliament. These amendments to Consumer Protection Laws are supposed to make remarkable changes in online selling and will serve higher level of protection to the buyers.
Though it looks like an all good government proposal, people would have to wait to find out how beneficial is the proposal for them. Express your views regarding this initiative by dropping a comment below.