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Awareness prog, free legal aid camp for aggrieved consumers


GUWAHATI, Dec 24 - On the eve of National Consumer Rights Day, the Consumers� Legal Protection Forum in collaboration with Jyotishikha Mahila Samannay Parishad, organised an awareness programme and a free legal aid camp for aggrieved consumers at Panjabari here today.

Attending the meeting as the chief guest, Khagen Dohotia, retired District & Sessions Judge, elaborately described the provisions of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. �This Act gives us more power to protect our rights as consumers. Most of us are not aware of our rights. After shopping, we never go through the cash memo a single time. Without the cash memo, we cannot claim compensation. A victim consumer can knock the doors of the District Consumer Forum and the State and National consumer commissions for justice if he or she has the cash memo in his or her hand.

Advocate Ajoy Hazarika, secretary of Consumers� Legal Protection Forum, spoke about the rights of the consumer. He said that under no circumstances should consumers pay more than the maximum retail price (MRP).

�They can actually bargain over the MRP. The shop owners cannot put their own stickers to make any extra profit on the commodities. Everyone should be aware of the misleading advertisements broadcast in the TV channels. At the time of online shopping, we should thoroughly go through the terms and conditions of the business house. We should raise our voice strongly against medical negligence cases. No financial institution can offer the benefits to its consumers above rates fixed by RBI,� he said.

Attending the programme, writer and retired civil servant Tabiul Hussain shared his experiences on harassment by bank authorities, and wrong treatment by hospitals and doctors.

He appealed to all to make themselves more informed to avoid unwanted situations in which consumers become victims. Other participants representing various organisations also shared their experiences about how they were cheated by unscrupulous traders, from the roadside vendors to shopping malls.

Ranjan Chakravarty, senior journalist, who conducted the programme, put emphasis on creating awareness among common consumers. Legal experts of the Consumers� Legal Protection Forum also provided free legal aid to the victim consumers during the event.

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