'c r e s k'  - "creating awareness" on Women and Child Rights, Consumer Rights, Environment Safety, Health, Hygiene and Pollution Control    
 
 
 
                           Consumer  Rights
 

1. MRTPC - Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practice Commission

2.  Lok Adalat

3. Banking Ombudsman Scheme 1995

4. Bureau of Indian Standards

5. Central Vigilance Commission

6. Complaints about Misleading, Dishonest and Indecent advertisements

7. Central food Technological and Research Institute

8. Addresses of Consumer Courts in India 

9. Information on Traffic Police

10. Complaints against Co-operative Societies  

11. Grievance regarding your provident fund / pensions 

12. Complaint against Noise Pollution

13. Complaint against Builder/Developer/Housing
 
14. Complaint against Postal Services

15. Directorate of Public Grievances

MONOPOLIES AND RESTRICTIVE TRADE PRACTICE COMMISSION

Complaints regarding monopolistic trade practice, unfair trade practice and restrictive trade practice can be made to the MRTP commission at the following address:

Director General (Investigation & Registration)
MRTPC
Bikaner House Baracks
Shahjahan Road
New Delhi 110011

Procedure of action on complaint:
 

  1. Inquiry may be initiated through a complaint by an individual or registered consumer organisation.

  2. Fact finding investigation is carried on by the Director General.

  3. If no prima facie case is made, the complaint is dismissed, else an order is passed to that effect.

  4. The commission may restrain the party concerned from carrying on the impugned trade practices by granting temporary injunction.

  5. Final order is passed. Compensation may be granted to the complainant.
     

MRTP ACT

       The Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practices Act, 1969, aims to prevent concentration of economic power to the common detriment, provide for control of monopolies and probation of monopolistic, restrictive and unfair trade practice, and protect consumer interest.
 

Monopolistic trade practice:

      Monopolistic trade practice is that which represents abuse of market power in the production and marketing of goods and services by eliminating potential competitors from market and taking advantage of the control over the market by charging unreasonably high prices, preventing or reducing competition, limiting technical development, deteriorating product quality or by adopting unfair or deceptive trade practices.

Unfair Trade Practice:
 

  1. Misleading advertisement and False Representation

  2. Falsely representing that goods and services are of a particular standard, quality, grade, composition or style.

  3. Falsely representing any second hand renovated or old goods as new.

  4. Representing that goods or services, seller or supplier have a sponsorship, approval or affiliation which they do not have.

  5. Making a false or misleading representation concerning need for, or usefulness of goods or services.

  6. Giving to public any warranty, guarantee of performance that is not based on an adequate test or making to public a representation which purports to be such a guarantee or warranty.

  7. False and misleading claims with respect to the price of goods or services.

  8. Giving false or misleading facts disparaging the goods, services or trade of another person or concern.
     

Restrictive Trade Practice:

     To maximise profits and market power, traders often attempt to indulge in certain trade practices which tend to obstruct the flow of capital into the stream of production. It may also bring manipulation of prices or conditions of delivery or affect the flow of supplies in the market so as to impose unjustified costs.



LOK ADALAT

      Lok Adalat (people’s courts), established by the government settles dispute through conciliation and compromise. The First Lok Adalat was held in Chennai in 1986. Lok Adalat accepts the cases which could be settled by conciliation and compromise, and pending in the regular courts within their jurisdiction.

       The Lok Adalat is presided over by a sitting or retired judicial officer as the chairman, with two other members, usually a lawyer and a social worker. There is no court fee. If the case is already filed in the regular court, the fee paid will be refunded if the dispute is settled at the Lok Adalat. The procedural laws, and the Evidence Act are not strictly followed while assessing the merits of the claim by the Lok Adalat.

       Main condition of the Lok Adalat is that both parties in dispute should agree for settlement. The decision of the Lok Adalat is binding on the parties to the dispute and its order is capable of execution through legal process. No appeal lies against the order of the Lok Adalat.

      Lok Adalat is very effective in settlement of money claims. Disputes like partition suits, damages and matrimonial cases can also be easily settled before Lok Adalat as the scope for compromise through an approach of give and take is high in these cases.

      Lok Adalat is a boon to the litigant public, where they can get their disputes settled fast and free of cost.


BANKING OMBUDSMAN SCHEME 1995

      The Ombudsman Scheme is a system of expeditious and inexpensive resolution to customer complaints. Any person whose grievance against a Bank is not resolved to his satisfaction by the Bank within a period of two months, he can approach the Banking Ombudsman if his complaint pertains to any of the matters specified in the scheme. Banking Ombudsmen have been authorised to look into the complaints concerning

(a). Deficiency in banking service

(b). Sanction of loans and advances in so far as they relate to non-observance of the Reserve Bank of India directives on interest rates, delays in sanction or non-observance of prescribed time schedule for disposal of loan application or non observance of any other directions or instructions of the Reserve Bank, etc. and

(c). Other matters as may be specified by the Reserve Bank. Ombudsman would make recommendations after listening to both parties. In case the recommendation made by the Banking Ombudsman is not accepted by either of the parties, Banking Ombudsman proceeds to make an award. The scheme is applicable to all scheduled commercial banks having business in India and scheduled primary co-operative banks except Regional Rural Banks. The procedure for the redressal of grievances under the Banking Ombudsman Scheme is profiled as under:

1. Written complaint is to be lodged by a person or an authorised representative

2. Complaint shall include signature of the complainant or an authorised representative along with the name, address and also name and address of the bank office/branch along with supportive documents, the nature and extent of the loss incurred and the relief sought from the Banking Ombudsman and a statement about the compliance of the conditions referred to in Sub-clause (3) of this clause.

3. No complaint to the Banking Ombudsman shall lie unless:
 

  • Written representation was made to the bank and either the bank had rejected the complaint or no reply was received from the bank within 60 days of receipt of complaint or in case of unsatisfactory reply received from the bank.

  • The complaint is made one year after the rejection of the representation by the bank or dispatch of final reply by the bank on the representation.

  • The complainant is not in receipt of the same subject matter if settled by the Banking Ombudsman in previous proceeding/s whether received from the same complainant or any one or more of the parties concerned with the subject matter.

  • The complaint is not the same subject matter, for which any proceedings before any court, tribunal or arbitrator or any other forum is pending or a decree or Award or order of dismissal has already been passed by any such court, tribunal, arbitrator or forum.

  • The complaint if not frivolous or vexatious in nature.
     

Shri.R.Ramalingam, I.P.S.
Challa Mall, 8th Floor
11/11A Sir Thyagaraya Road
T.Nagar, Chennai 600017

*
Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry, Andaman and Nicobar Islands

BUREAU OF INDIAN STANDARDS

PURPOSE

       During the pre independence period, standardization activity was sporadic and confined mainly to a few Government purchasing organization. However, immediately after independence, economic development through coordinated utilization of resources was called for and the government recognized the …… role for standardization in gearing industry to competitive efficiency and quality production. The Indian Standards Institution (ISI) was, therefore, set up in 1947 as a registered society, under a Government of India resolution.

      The Indian Standards Institution gave the nation the standards it needed for nationalization, orderly industrial and commercial growth, quality production and competitive efficiency. However, in 1986 the government recognized the need for strengthening this National Standards Body due to fast changing socio-economic scenario and according it a statutory status. Thus came the Bureau of Indian Standards Act 1986 and on 1 April 1987, newly formed BIS took over staff assets, liabilities and functions of erstwhile ISI. Through this change over, the Government envisaged building of the climate of quality culture and conciousness and greater participation of consumers in formulation and implementation of National Standards.

OBJECTIVES
 

  • Harmonious development of standardization, marking and quality certification

  • To provide new thrust to standardization and quality control

  • To evolve a national strategy for according recognition to standards and integrating them with growth and development of production and exports

Complaints: spcad@bis.org.in

Head Quarters
Manak Bhavan
9 Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg
New Delhi 110 002, India
Tel :                             +91 11 23230131         +91 11 23230131                        +91 11 23230131         +91 11 23230131 , 23233375, 23239402 (10 lines)
Fax : +91 11 23234062, 23239399, 23239382
Grams : Manaksanstha
Email : info@bis.org.in
Web: www.bis.org.in

Southern Region Office

Administrative office
C.I.T. Campus,
IV Cross Road,
Chennai 600 113.
Tel : 044-22541442, 22541216, 22542519
Fax : 91-044-22541087
Email : sro@bis.org.in Sales Point
IV Cross Road,
Chennai 600 113.
Tel : 044-22542315
044-22541311
E-mail :salessro@bis.org.in

Designation, Telephone Numbers, Email address
P Sengupta
Sc F (DDG), Southern Region 22542365(O)
ddgs@bis.org.in


CENTRAL VIGILANCE COMMISSION

Who can lodge a complaint and how?

       The Fight against corruption cannot be started, let alone won, without the active meaningful support of the public at large. The Central Vigilance Commission invites the co-operation of all right thinking people in their effort to eliminate this scourge. Any member of the public can lodge a complaint with the Central Vigilance Commission of those relating to malpractices, misconduct or corruption in public services relating to officials of Central Government Ministries, Departments, Public Sector Undertakings, Nationalised Banks, Insurance Companies, Financial Institutions, other Corporations and Societies established by or under any Central Act, Government companies, societies and other local authorities, owned or controlled by the Central Government may be sent directly to the Central Vigilance Commission. All complaints sent by post to the Commission have to be signed and should contain the name and address of the complainant. One can lodge a complaint through the CVC Website also.

Procedure to lodge a complaint through e-mail:

       The Commission invites complaints through e-mail also. If you want to lodge a complaint against any public servant who fall within the jurisdiction of the Commission, all you have to do is to key in the following information at the following E-mail address:vigilance@hub.nic.in

WHERE TO COMPLAIN ABOUT MISLEADING, DISHONEST AND INDECENT ADVERTISEMENTS
 

If you notice any advertisement through any medium whatsoever that it is misleading, dishonest or indecent, then you can report the matter to the address given below and put an end to such advertisements.

The Advertising Standards Council of India
205, Bombay Market
Tardeo Road
Mumbai 4000034

E-mail: asci@vsnl.com

Central Food Technological and Research Institute
 
Head Food Safety & Analytical Quality Control Laboratory Central Food Technical Research Institute,
Mysore - 570 013.
Ph:                             + 91 - 821 - 2514972         + 91 - 821 - 2514972                        + 91 - 821 - 2514972         + 91 - 821 - 2514972
Fax: + 91 - 821 - 2517233

E-mail: fsaqcl @ cftri . res . in

Website: http://www.cftri.com/

The analysis of processed fruit and vegetable products manufactured by the licensees under the Fruit Products Order (FPO) was entrusted to the CSIR by the Government of India in 1953, after the merger of the Indian Institute of Fruit Technology, Lyallpur (now in Pakistan) with CFTRI. The institute, in turn, entrusted this analysis activity to its FPO laboratory which had been set up earlier, in recognition of the importance of quality control and export promotion in food products. In addition to analysis of samples received voluntarily from different food processors, the laboratory was offering them advice on the defects observed in their products and the ways and means to improve the products. It was also engaged in developmental work on analytical techniques, formulation of standards for new types of products, and redrafting of specifications under the FPO. The laboratory was attached to the Fruit and Vegetable Technology Department, and many distinguished scientists served here to give a shape to FPO rules and regulations, and the specifications laid down for various products.

       In 1976, the FPO laboratory was upgraded to a full-fledged department and called Analytical Quality Control Laboratory (AQCL). In 1995, the laboratory was renamed as Food Safety and Analytical Quality Control Laboratory (FS&AQCL), the name by which it is well known today.

       Today, FS&AQCL is a leading food product analysis laboratory, equipped with state-of-art facilities, and managed by competent, experienced scientists and professionals who keep constant track of validated methods for ensuring results with high levels of accuracy. It is ISO 9002-certified and is strongly committed to the pursuit of excellence in analytical quality testing.

      FS&AQCL is a Central Food Laboratory of India, an appellate centre under the country's Prevention of Food Adulteration Act & Rules. It is also a Nodal Codex Food Laboratory of India which has accorded it the privileged status of being a referral centre for the nation in matters of analysis, safety, quality and regulations concerning food and food products.

  1. Multi-disciplinary analysis and evaluation of processed foods received from the industry or government, for quality certification (for domestic as well as export markets) and nutrition labeling

  2. Development of reliable and specific methods for food analysis and devices for food testing; and preparation of manuals for standard usage

  3. Organization of training programmes in food composition analysis, quality assurance and food laws and administration of proficiency

  4. Organization of awareness programmes in food safety, for rural masses

FUNCTIONS AS A CENTRAL FOOD LABORATORY

  • Analysis of appeal food samples received from various trying courts, and submission of related analysis reports and opinions, to the judiciary

  • Analysis /advice on imported food articles received from customs and port health officers

  • Generation of data for fixation or revision of standards for food articles

  • Development of new and improved analytical methods for detection of food adulterants and contaminants, and collaborating with government laboratories and similar organisations in food-related investigations, and standardisation of methodologies of food analysis

  • Consumer awareness programmes on food safety and health

FUNCTIONS AS A NODAL CODEX FOOD LABORATORY

  • Interaction with the CODEX Alimentarius Commission and with FAO/WHO JECFA on safety evaluation of food additives and monitoring & surveillance of contaminants

  • Preparation of inputs to the shadow committees of the National CODEX committee

  • Training food laboratory personnel across the country, through regular programmes in the latest concepts and techniques of food analysis

  • Conduct of proficiency tests under the National Accreditation Programme

  • Ensuring safe use of food additives in development of foods and technologies

  • Managing an apex information centre for national and international
    food standards and food legislation

Capabilities

  • Food compositional analysis: Determination of proximate composition (moisture, protein, fat, carbohydrates, crude fibre, minerals...)

  • Food contaminants/ toxicants (mycotoxins, aflatoxins, pesticide residues, trace metals) analysis

  • Food additives analysis (preservatives, synthetic colours, artificial sweeteners, anti-oxidants...)

  • Vitamins and minerals analysis

  • Microbiological analysis

  • Water analysis

  • Nutrition labeling support

PUBLIC AWARENESS PROGRAMMES:

      Food safety awareness being a matter of vital importance for the industry as well as the consumer, we conduct public awareness programmes in different villages/cities of Karnataka and neighbouring states, regularly as well as on special occasions. During these programmes, food adulteration and its implications would be explained and appropriate tests would be demonstrated to the public, by videos in various local languages.

     During these programmes, the public were explained about food adulteration and its implications and some simple tests to detect some of the most commonly found adulterants in identified food items were also demonstrated. Video cassettes on these aspects were also made in English, Kannada, Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam and Marathi.

Major Projects Completed

  1. Storage stability studies on sugar aspartame blend

  2. Quality evaluation of energy food

  3. Quality evaluation of edible oils

  4. Evaluation of Prasadam

  5. Quality monitoring of tea samples

  6. Technical consultancy assistance on quality assurance of weaning food and protein-rich cereal flour/semolina mixes

  7. Preparation of technical document on chicory

  8. Menthol content in confectionery items
     

Addresses of Consumer Courts in India

        Complaints can be filed either in National Commission, State Commission or District Forum depending on the total amount of money involved as costs and compensation.


ADDRESS OF NATIONAL CONSUMER DISPUTES REDRESSAL COMMISSION IN INDIA

National Consumer Disputes Redressal Comission
A Wing, 5th Floor, Janpath Bhawan
Cannaught Place
New Delhi 110001

Fax: (011) 23712456

Tamil Nadu

The President,
Tamil Nadu State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission,
212, R.K. Mutt Road, Slum Clearence Board Building,
Iind Floor, Southern Wing, Mylapore, Madras -600 004.


National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission

       The Consumer Protection Act, 1986 (here in after to be referred to as the ‘Act’) is one of the benevolent social legislation intended to protect the large body of consumers from exploitation. The Act has come as a panacea for consumers all over the country and has assumed the shape of practically the most important legislation enacted in the country during the last few years. It has become the vehicle for enabling people to secure speedy and in-expensive redressal of their grievances. With the enactment of this law, consumers now feel that they are in a position to declare “sellers be aware” whereas previously the consumers were at the receiving end and generally told “buyers be aware”.

       The Act postulates establishment of Central Consumer Protection Council and the State Consumer Protection Councils for the purpose of spreading consumer awareness. Central Council is headed by Minster, incharge of the Consumer Affairs in the Central Government and in the State it is the Minister incharge of the Consumer Affairs in the State Government who heads State Council.

      To provide cheap, speedy and simple redressal to consumer disputes, quasi-judicial machinery is set up at each District, State and National levels called District Forums, State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission and National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission respectively. At present, there are 604 District Forums, 35 State Commissions with apex body as a National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) having its office at Janpath Bhawan, A Wing, 5th Floor, Janpath, New Delhi.

       The District Forums are headed by the person who is or has been or is eligible to be appointed as a District Judge and the State Commissions are headed by a person who is or has been a Judge of High Court.

        National Commission was constituted in the year, 1988. It is headed by a sitting or retired Judge of the Supreme Court of India. National Commission is presently headed by Hon’ble Mr. Justice M.B. Shah, former Judge of the Supreme Court of India as President and having five Members, viz. Mrs. Rajyalakshmi Rao, Mr. B.K. Taimni, Hon’ble Mr. Justice K. S. Gupta, Hon’ble Mr. Justice S.N. Kapoor & Dr. P. D. Shenoy. Hon'ble Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Government of India has inaugurated the Additional Bench of the National Commission on 24th September, 2003.

       The provisions of this Act cover ‘Products’ as well as ‘Services’. The products are those which are manufactured or produced and sold to consumers through wholesalers and retailers. The services are of the nature of transport, telephones, electricity, constructions, banking, insurance, medical treatment etc. etc. The services are, by and large, include those provided by professionals such as Doctors, Engineers, Architects, Lawyers etc.

        A written complaint, as amended by Consumer Protection (Amendment) Act, 2002, can be filed before the District Consumer Forum (upto Rupees twenty lakhs), State Commission (upto Rupees One crore), National Commission ( above Rrupees One crore) in relation to a product or in respect of a service, but does not include rendering of any service free of cost or under a contract of personal service. The service can be of any description, the illustrations given above are only indicative and not exhaustive.

       The Consumer Protection Act is an alternative and cheapest remedy already available to the aggrieved persons/consumers by way of civil suit. In the complaint/appeal/petition submitted under the Act, a consumer is not required to pay any court fees or even process fee.

        Proceedings are summary in nature and endeavour is made to grant relief to the parties in the quickest possible time keeping in mind the spirit of the Act which provides for disposal of the cases within possible time schedule prescribed under the Act.

       If a consumer is not satisfied by the decision of the District Forum, he can challenge the same before the State Commission and against the order of the State Commission a consumer can come to the National Commission.

       In order to attain the objects of the Consumer Protection Act, the National Commission has also been conferred with the powers of administrative control over all the State Commissions by calling for periodical returns regarding the institution, disposal and pendency of cases. National Commission is empowered to issue instructions regarding, (1) adoption of uniform procedure in the hearing of the matters; (2) prior service of copies of documents produced by one party to the opposite parties; (3) speedy grant of copies of documents; and (4) generally over-seeing the functioning of the State Commissions or the District Forums to ensure that the objects and purposes of the Act are best served without in any way interfering with their quasi-judicial freedom.

      The Registry of the National Commission, is on 7th Floor, ‘B’ Wing, Janpath Bhawan, Janpath, New Delhi which remains open on all working days except Sundays, Saturdays and Central Govt. holidays. For any enquiry from the Registry of the National Commission, one can contact on Telephone Nos. 011-23712109, 23712459, 23389248 and Fax No. 23712456. The filing timings are from 10.00 A.M. to 5.00 P.M. Every matter filed with the Registry in person is listed on 7th day of its filing for admission before the National Commission. Functioning of District Forum, State Commission and National Commission is consumer friendly, and thus consumer can file complaint and can address arguments in person. In genuine cases where the parties are unable to engage the services of an advocate Bar Association of NCDRC also provides legal aid to needy.

CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT, 1986


      The consumer protection Act, 1986, provides for the better protection of consumers. Unlike existing laws which are punitive or preventive in nature, the provisions of this Act are compensatory in nature. The act is intended to provide simple, speedy and inexpensive redressal to the consumers' grievances, award relief and compensation wherever appropriate to the consumer. The act has been amended in 1993 both to extend its coverage and scope and to enhance the powers of the redressal machinery.

RIGHTS ENJOYED BY CONSUMER

  1. Right to be protected against the marketing of goods and service that is hazardous to life and property.

  2. Right to be informed about the quality, quantity, potency, purity, standard and price of goods or services so as to protect the consumer against unfair trade practices.

  3. Right to choice wherever possible , access to a variety of goods and services at competitive prices.

  4. Right to be heard and to be assured that consumers' interests will receive due consideration at appropriate forums;

  5. Right to seek redressal against unfair trade practices unscrupulous exploitation of consumers.

  6. Right to consumer education.

  7. Right to clean and healthy environment.

STRUCTURE OF CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT

     The Act envisages a three-tier quasi-judicial machinery at the National, State and District levels.

  • National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission - known as "National Commission" deals with complaints involving costs and compensation higher than Rs. 20 lakhs.

  • State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commissions - known as "State Commission.

  • District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forums - known as "District Forum.

EXTENT AND COVERAGE OF CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT

  • The Act applies to all goods and services unless specifically exempted by the Central Government.

  • It covers all the sectors whether private, public or cooperative.

  • The provisions of the Act are compensatory in nature.

  • The provisions of this Act are in addition to and not in derogation of the provisions of any other law for the time being in force.

  • The Act envisages establishment of Consumer Protection Councils at the Central and State levels, whose main objects will be to promote and protect the rights of the consumers.

WHO IS CONSUMER?

     All of us are consumers of goods and services. For the purpose of the Consumer Protection Act, the word "Consumer" has been defined separately for "goods" and "services".

(A) For the purpose of "goods", a consumer means a person belonging to the following categories:

  • One who buys or agrees to buy any goods for a consideration which has been paid or promised or partly paid and partly promised or under any system of deferred payment;

  • It includes any user of such goods other than the person who actualy buys goods and such use is made with the approval of the purchaser.

Note : A person is not a consumer if he purchases goods for commercial or resale purposes. However, the word "commercial" does not include use by consumer of goods bought and used by him exclusively for the purpose of earning his livelihood, by means of self employment.

(B) For the purpose of "services", a "consumer" means a person belonging to the following categories:

  • One who hires or avails of any service or services for a consideration which has been paid or promised or partly paid and partly promised or under any system of deferred payment.

  • It includes any beneficiary of such service other than the one who actually hires or avails of the service for consideration and such services are availed with the approval of such person.

WHAT IS CONSUMER COMPLAINT?

Under the Consumer Protection Act, a complaint means any allegation in writing made by a complainant in regard to one or more of the following:-

  • Any unfair trade practice as defined in the Act or restrictive trade practices like tie-up sales adopted by any trader.

  • One or more defects in goods. The goods hazardous to life and safety, when used, are being offered for sale to public in contravention of provisions of any law for the time being in force.

  • Deficiencies in services.

  • A trader charging excess of price.

               (i) Fixed by or under any law for the time being in force; or

               (ii) Displayed on goods; or

               (iii) Displayed on any packet containing such goods.

        Procedures for filing complaints and seeking redressal are simple. There is no fee for filing a complaint before the District Forum, the State Commission or the National Commission. ( A stamp paper is also not required). Three to five copies of the complaint on plain paper depending on the number of opposite parties, etc. are required to be filed.

RELIEF AVAILABLE TO CONSUMER

       Depending on the facts and circumstances, the Redressal Forums may give order for one or more of the following relief.

  1. Removal of defects from the goods,

  2. Replacement of the goods;

  3. Refund of the price paid;

  4. Award of compensation for the loss or injury suffered;

  5. Removal of defects or deficiencies in the services;

  6. Discontinuance of unfair trade practices or restrictive trade practices or direction not
    to repeat them;

  7. Withdrawal of the hazardous goods from being offered to sale; or

  8. Award for adequate costs to parties

DEFINITIONS

(i)"goods" means goods as defined in the State of Goods Act, 1930 (3 of 1930).  According to the Sale of Goods Act, 1930. "goods" means every kind of movable property other than actionable claims and money, and includes stock and shares, growing crops, grass, and this attached to or forming part of the land which are agreed to be severed before sale or under the contract of sale.

(ii)"service" means service of any description which is made available to potential users and includes the provision of facilities in connection with banking, financing, insurance, transport, processing, supply of electrical or other energy, board or lodging or both, housing construction, entertainment, amusement or the purveying of news or other information, but does not include the rendering of any service free of charge or under a contract of personal service.

(iii)"restrictive trade practice" means any trade practice which requires a consumer to buy, hire or avail of any goods or, as the case may be, services as a condition precedent for buying, hiring or availing of other goods or services.

(iv)"defect" means any fault, imperfection or shortcoming in the quality, quantity, potency, purity or standard which is required to be maintained by or under any law for the time being in force or under any contract express or implied or as is claimed by the trader in any manner whatsoever in relation to any goods.

(v)"deficiency" means any fault, imperfection, shortcoming or inadequacy in the quality, nature and manner of performance which is required to be maintained by or under any law for the time being in force or has been undertaken to be performed by a person in pursuance of a contract or otherwise in relation to any service.

(vi)"unfair trade practice" the detailed definition is given in the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 as amended by the Consumer Protection (Amendment) Act. 1993. It means a trade practice which, for the purpose of promoting the sale, use or supply of any goods or for the provision of any service, adopts any unfair method or unfair or deceptive practice including any of the following practices, namely :-

       (a) false or misleading representation,

       (b) bargain price

       (c) offering of gifts, prize, contest etc.

       (d) non compliance of product safety standard.

       (e) hoarding or destruction of goods.

CONTENTS OF CONSUMER COMPLAINT

       Procedures for filing complaints and seeking redressal are simple. There is no fee for filing a complaint before the District Forum, the State Commission or the National Commission. (A stamp paper is also not required). Three to five copies of the complaint on plain paper are required to be submitted by the complainant or his authorized agent in person or could be sent by post to the appropriate Forum / Commission.

A complaint should contain the following information:-

(a) The name, description and the address of the complainant.

(b) The name , description and address of the opposite party or parties, as the case may be, as far as they can be ascertained;

(c) The facts relating to complaint and when and where it arose;

(d) Documents, if any, in support of the allegations contained in the complaint.

(e) The relief which the complainant is seeking.

The complaint should be signed by the complainant or his authorized agent.

The complaint is to be filed within two years from the date on which cause of action has arisen.

Insurance / Water / corporation authorities links


Information on Traffic Police

Common experiences with traffic department:

  • A traffic policeman in uniform has the right to demand your drivers licence and inspect your vehicle documents. He may impound your licence if he should so judge it necessary.

  • If a traffic policeman gives you instructions on the road, it is your duty to obey them regardless of what the electronic traffic signals say. When a traffic policeman is stationed at a signal/crossing, he is the final authority.

  • If you cannot find your vehicle, it is likely that it may have been towed rather than stolen. Ask around, local shopkeepers are normally informed about local traffic stations where impounded vehicles are kept.

Your duties:

  1. Stop your vehicle when a traffic policeman so indicates.

  2. You may ask him what the reason for your being stopped was.

  3. Do not argue with the policeman. If you feel there is a genuine argument for your having broken a rule, explain it to him.

  4. If you have committed a mistake, admit it candidly, seek his pardon. He may well let you off with a warning if approached with courtesy.

  5. Do not drop names of policemen and influential people.

  6. If the policeman is insistent, show him the requisite documents, and allow him to take whatever action falls within the purview of his duties.

Action by Traffic Policeman:

  • He may note down the particulars of your licence which will later be forwarded to a court. The court will then issue instructions regarding what course of action is to be taken - a certain amount as fine. If you plead guilty and send the requisite amount, the case will be filed, else summons will be sent to you and the case will be judged on merit.

  • He may impend your Drivers' Licence and issue a temporary licence (which lasts only for a stipulated period). You may compound the offence by paying a fine at the police station under whose jurisdiction the licence was impounded. Else you will be provided a summons from court, if you fail to appear in court, an arrest warrant may be issued.

  • If the policeman is an officer of rank sub-inspector or above, you may compound the office on the spot by paying a fine. The relevant recipts will be provided to you.

What to do if harassed by traffic policeman:

  • If a traffic policeman harasses you for illegal gratification, never yield to his demands.

  • Allow him to impound your licence, do not attempt to bribe him even if coerced.

  • Note down his buckle number/name which will be written on a plate on his shirt. If he does not have one, you may demand his identity card. If he fails to provide you an identity card, refuse to give him your documents.

  • All receipts, temporary licences will have the name/buckle number of the officer.

  • You can approach the traffic police with a specific complaint indicating all the particulars about the incident, this MUST include details about the concerned police officer. It is desirable to send this complaint by registered post.

Common Offences:

  1. Not carrying valid licence while driving /. driving without a licence.

  2. Allowing a vehicle to be driven by someone who does not have a licence.

  3. Driving without insurance / permit / fitness

  4. Speeding / reckless driving

  5. Driving under the influence of alcohol.

  6. Lane-cutting / dangerous lane-cutting.

  7. Moving against a One-way.

  8. Stopping at a pedestrian crossing / crossing a stop line.

  9. Improper use of headlights.

  10. Using a private vehicle for commercial purposes.

  11. Overloading a goods vehicle.

  12. Carrying goods in a dangerous manner.

  13. Taxi Drivers refusing to ply / charging extra / not wearing uniform.

NOTE: If a person after having committed an offence (under the Motor Vehicles Act.) refuses to give his name he can be arrested by a police officer.


To file a complaint against a co-operative housing society send your complaint to:

Registrar
Co-operative Housing Societies Federation Ltd.
Address of the office where your society is registered
City name

If your grievance is not redressed, you can contact the Commissioner of the Co-operative Housing Societies Federation Ltd,. within your State.

Complaint to Registrar is to be made on the matters of:

      (1) Registration of society on misrepresentation

      (2) Non occupancy charges

      (3) Non supply of copies of record and documents

      (4) Non maintenance or incomplete maintenance of records and books

      (5) Misappropriation of funds

      (6) Investment of funds without prior permission

      (7) Audit

      (8) Non conducting of election before expiry of the term of committee

      (9) Non calling of General Body Meeting

     (10) Resignation of committee

Complaint in Co-operative court is to be made on the matters of:

      (1) Repairs, internal repairs, leakages.

      (2) Parking

      (3) Escalation of construction cost

      (4) Unequal water supply

      (5) Excess recovery of dues from members

Complaint to Police is to be made on the matters of:

  1. Nuisance carried out by unauthorized use of flat / shop / parking space / open space by member or builder.

  2. Threatening / assault by or to the member of society

  3. Creating noise after prescribed deadline hour in the evening

Complaint to General Body is to be made on the matters of:

  1. Non maintenance of property by managing committee

  2. Levy of excess fine

  3. Not allowing authenticated use of the available open space of the society by managing committee


Redress your grievance regarding your provident fund / pensions through:

Ministry of Personnal Public Grievances & Pensions
Dept.of Pension & Pensioners Welfare
3rd Floor,Lok Nayak Bhavan
Khan Market
New Delhi 110 003

COMPLAINT AGAINST NOISE POLLUTION

  • You have a right to live in a peaceful and healthy environment.

  • You can file a complaint with the local police against noise pollution created by construction machineries or loudspeakers in your locality.

  • A ready format of complaint can be accessed through the following links.

  • Complaint against noise pollution due to construction machineries

  • Complaint against noise pollution due to loud speakers

AGAINST BUILDER / DEVELOPER / HOUSING

Products and services by builder are covered under the Consumer Protection Act.

You can file a complaint in case the builder has given you deficient services regarding the following:

  1. Charged higher than agreed amount.

  2. Did not give a receipt against the paid amount.

  3. Delivered a poor quality construction.

  4. Delivered a house that does not comply with the specifications agreed upon.

  5. Did not provide for free parking space within the compound / complex.

  6. Did not form co-operative housing society and handed it over to its members.

  7. Did not provide for water storage tank.

  8. Did not provide for enough ventilation and light.

  9. Did not deliver the house within the agreed time limit. If time limit not mentioned, it is assumed that the construction will be finished within maximum of 2 years from the date of start of work.

  10. Did not give accounts for the expenses against which the builder has collected money, i.e. maintenance, electrical installations (transformer), etc.

  11. And many more..........

     If you have grievance against builder, send a notice to him in writing. Do not worry if he refuses to accept your notice as only proof of sending is required. Send the notice by registered post or Under Postal certificate. Retain the proof of sending. The proof of sending is valid in the Consumer Court Under Section 28A (3) of the Consumer Protection (Amendment) Act of 2002 and will be declared as the notice has been duly served.

File your complaint in the consumer court in case the builder does not respond to your notice.

AGAINST POSTAL SERVICES


      If your grievance is not solved locally by the Head Post Master of your city from the local Head Post Office, you can address your complaints to the Post Master General of your state at following address:

The Post Master General
State name
State Capital

Directorate of Public Grievances

       The Directorate of Public Grievances (DPG), Cabinet Secretariat, Government of India is an administrative mechanism which facilitates individual citizens in obtaining fair and objective dealing of certain types of their unresolved grievances with specified Central Government Departments/Organizations, in certain situations. This facilitation is provided in consultation with the concerned Central Government Department or Organization. The actual redress is provided by the Departments/Organizations.

       You may approach DPG with specific details of your grievance along with copies of supporting documents/evidence to substantiate the same. Your earlier attempts to have the grievance resolved through grievance redress mechanism of the concerned Department should be furnished. Indicate whether you have filed any appeal, against any previous decision of the concerned Organization/Department, before any Court, Tribunal or Consumer Forum. State your full identity and postal address along with your e-mail address and telephone number, if any. Invariably affix your signature or thumb impression on your letter. DPG does not charge any type of fee.

       On receipt of a grievance, DPG inter alia assesses what aspects of it fall in the purview, its gravity, etc. Based on this, DPG either seeks the comments of the concerned Department/Organization or it transfers the grievance to the concerned Department/Organization requesting it to directly deal the matter. This action is normally taken within 15 working days of receipt of grievance and the individual is informed.

     When DPG calls for comments, the concerned Department/Organization is expected to examine the matter and make a speaking reply within six weeks and in any case not later than 3 months. After receipt of comments DPG may, if considered necessary in the facts and circumstances of the case, seek further information so as to ensure that the grievance is dealt in a fair and objective manner by the concerned Department/Organization. Cases where comments were called are closed in DPG with the approval of Secretary (Coord. & PG), Cabinet Secretariat, Government of India who heads DPG.

       DPG holds two kinds of records. Physical records are maintained only with respect to cases where comments from the concerned Department/Organization are called by DPG. If the closure of such cases is in a manner favourable to the individuals, such records are retained one year from the date of closure. In other situations, physical records are retained for two years from the date of closure. Physical record is not maintained in respect of grievances transferred by DPG to the concerned Department/Organization for action. The records of actions taken are stored electronically

Address :

Directorate of Public Grievances, Cabinet Secretariat,
2nd Floor, Sardar Patel Bhawan, Sansad Marg,
New Delhi-110001.
A drop-box is also placed on the ground floor of Sardar Patel Bhavan.

Dr. Renuka Viswanathan, Secretary (Coord. & PG), Cabinet Secretariat heads the Directorate of Public Grievances. Her telephone number is 23345545, Fax No. 23345637 and E-mail address - secypg@nic.in

The allocation of work amongst officers of the Cabinet Secretariat is as under –

Ashok Pai
Director
Telephone No:23364875
Email Address: ashokpai@nic.in
Dept./Organizations Handled: Public Sector Banks, Public Sector Insurance Companies, National Saving Scheme of Ministry of Finance

Faquir Chand
Director
Telephone No: 23743139
Email Address : fchand@nic.in
Department of Telecom (incl. BSNL & MTNL), Employees Provident Fund Organization, ESI Hospitals & Dispensaries directly controlled by ESI Corporation under Ministry of Labour

Telephone No: 23363886
Email Address : sajee-mp@nic.in
Ministry of Urban Development (DDA, L&DO, CPWD, etc), Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Regional Passport Authorities, Central Government Health Scheme (CGHS), Central Universities, Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan, CBSE, National Institute of Open Schooling and Navodaya Vidayalaya Samiti

P.S. Varma
Deputy Secretary
Telephone No.: 23363733
Email Address : varma@nic.in

Ministry of Railways

M. P. Sajeevan
Under Secretary
Telephone No.:23363733
Email Address: sajee-mp@nic.in
Department of Posts, Ministry of Civil Aviation (IA, AI, AAI, etc), Ministry of Shipping, Road Transport & Highways, Ministry of Tourism

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