Focus: GS-III Indian Economy
Why in news?
The Consumer Protection Act, 2019, has brought in a new regulatory framework for e-commerce in the country, requiring online platforms to display the country of origin of items sold, apart from new rules that will enforce product liability for the first time.
Rules framed under the Consumer Protection Act, 2019, covering aggregators, such as Amazon, or inventory-led models where retailers own and sell the stocks, are now required by law to specify the country where a product is made or assembled.
- According to the new rules, any seller, whether online or offline, will be subject to “product liability”.
- This means that a product manufacturer or seller will have to compensate for “any harm caused to a consumer” because of “defective products” manufactured or sold.
- Every online entity must also provide pre-purchase information related to return, refund, exchange, warranty and guarantee and delivery of shipments.
- E-commerce platforms have to acknowledge the receipt of any complaint from a consumer within 48 hours and redress the complaint within a month.
Resolution of Complaints
- Under this Act, the Central Consumer Protection Authority will be empowered to probe violations of consumer rights and institute complaint and order recall of unsafe goods and services.
- According to the Act, an Alternate Dispute Resolution mechanism of Mediation will simplify the adjudication process.
- A complaint will be referred by a Consumer Commission for mediation when there is a scope for early settlement and if parties agree for it.
- Mediation will be held in mediation cells under consumer commissions. There will be no appeal against settlement through mediation.
-Source: Hindustan Times