TODAY -

Department of Consumer Affairs & NCDRC organizes conference
to review functioning of State Commissions and District Fora

Source: IT News / PIB

New Delhi, October 27 2018: Th e D ep art men t of Co nsu me r A ffa irs, Government of India along with Nation al Consumer Disp ute s Re dre ss al Commission (NCDRC) jointly organized a Conference at VigyanBhawan New Delhi today to revie w the func tioning of the S tate Commissions and District Fora.

The Conference was attended by Presidents of Stat e Commissions and Secretaries in c ha rge of Consumer Affairs of States and UTs.

The Conference was presided over bythe Ministe r of St ate for Consumer Affairs, Food, Pu blic Distrib ution & Commerce and Industry, Shri C.R.Chaudhary, and President, NCDRC, Justice R.K .

A ga rw al.

The Conference is being held at a crucial time, when the Government has introduced a new Consumer Protection Bill, 2018 in the Lok Sabha re pe aling th e C ons um er Protection Act of 1986 with su bst an tia l c han ge s for me et in g t he em erging ch allen ges face d by co ns um ers in t he n ew markets.

The Secretary, Department of Consumer Affairs, Shri Avinash K.Srivastava, while welcoming the delegates me nt ion ed t hat t he Conference is being held to discuss the issues relating to the functioning of the Co ns ume r Fora suc h as pendency of case and filling up of vacancies in the post of President and Members of the Commissions.

Shri Srivas tava als o drew attention to the alternate wa ys o f red res sa l of co ns um er co mplaint s, co mp ute riza tio n of co nsu me r fora a nd notification of Model Rules by the States.

President NCDRC,Justice R. K.Agarwal, in his address mentioned about increasing pendency of cases in various consum er fora inc luding national commission and suggested that the vac ancies in th ese commissions should be filled up e xpeditiously.

Shri Agarwal emphasized that the number of adjournment and appeals should be restricted according to the monitory valu e of th e cases .

He welcomed the introduction of Me diation in the Consumer Protection Bill and mentioned that this will also help in re ducing the pendency of cases.

The Minister of State of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Shri C.R Chaudhary, in his address mentioned that enforcement of Consumer Protection Act and allied laws are the joint responsibility of the Centre and the States.

Shri C.R Chau dhary s tated that Mode l Rules relatin g to appo intmen t, salary/ remu neratio n and o ther cond itions o f servic e of President/ Members in the State Commission/District Fora framed by this Ministry in c onsultat ion with the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission has been circulated to the States and UTs.

Th e Minister requested all States and UTs to issue no tificat ions adopting these rules as early as possible.

Shri Chaudhary also mentioned that the District Fora should avoid giving any adjournments and should be encouraged to decide cases on the first hearing itself and requ ested S tate Commissions to monitor this aspect.

The Minister further invited suggestions from the States for strengthening the redressal mechanism and the support required from the Centre for this purpose.

He asserted that the Gove rnment has already strengthened the National Consumer Helpline as the alternate system for resolving consumer complaints so that the consumers need not approach the consumer fora forresolving their grievances.

The Minister expected that this Conference will come out with a future action plan for bett er stren gthening the existing consumer disputes redressal mechanisms.

The Conference had two Tech nical S essions .

In Session I the functioning of the Consumer Fora, steps to be t aken to reduce the pendency of the cases, and implementation of the Model Rules etc.

were discussed.

In the Session II the matters discussed included progress of the implementation of co mp ute riz at ion a nd networking of Consumer Fora, utilization of funds re le ase u nde r vario us sc hem es su ch as strengthening and Swachh Bharat Action Plan.


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