KATHMANDU, March 15: Various programs are being organized in the capital today to mark the World Consumer Rights Day.
World Consumer Rights Day falls on March 15 every year as part of an initiative by Consumer International, a membership organization for consumer groups around the world.
The day is marked to give a message that everyone in this world has access to safe and sustainable products and services.
A high-level committee formed under the leadership of Commerce Secretary Yam Kumari Khatiwada to observe the World Consumer Rights Day is organizing various programs in the capital for the next three days.
The committee organized a rally in the capital today morning to mark the day. The rally that commenced from the premises of Babarmahal-based Department of Commerce converged into an assembly at Nayabaneshwor-based Hira Party Palace.
The Commerce Department hosted an interaction at Nayabaneshwor today morning to mark the day, which was attended by Minister for Commerce Matrika Yadav, senior government officials, consumer rights activists and among others.
World Consumer Rights Day was inspired by President John F Kennedy,who was the first leader in the world to address the issue of consumer rights in a special message sent to the US Congress on 15 March 1962.
The group brings together over 200 member organisations in more than 100 countries to "empower and champion the rights of consumers everywhere."
The theme for World Consumers day 2019 is "Trusted Smart Products" chosen in view of the increased popularity of smart gadgets like smart phones to wearable fitness trackers, to voice-activated assistants and smart TVs. These devices as we are aware, make our lives simpler, but at the same time establish a sort of interdependency.
For this, the government of India has also undertaken several initiatives to protect the rights of consumers, which stem from the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 that gives Indian consumers some basic rights. However, lack of awareness remains a big challenge in the way of benefits from these rights fully reach the people.
By definition, consumer rights mean that each consumer has the right to have information about the quality, potency, quantity, purity, price and standard of goods or services.
Hence it becomes essential that the people are aware of their rights, which broadly include:
The right to be protected from all kind of hazardous goods and services
The right to be fully informed about the performance and quality of all goods and services
The right to free choice of goods and services
The right to be heard in all decision-making processes related to consumer interests
The right to seek redressal, whenever consumer rights have been infringed
The right to complete consumer education