Inflation has been a major problem in the past decade. Prices of all things have gone up. Still, there are some products whose prices have not risen. They are being sold at the same price since a long time now. Ever wondered how the company has managed to keep its price under control?
Well, it hasn’t. Companies are misleading consumers by means of reducing the quantity of their goods while keeping the prices fixed. Many companies had, without informing the customers, made changes in the weights of consumer items like soaps, shampoo, toothpaste and other packaged products.
There is no particular standard set by the court or the Consumer Forum and numerous complaints from consumers with regard to such standards have been widely reported.
Taking note of these irregularities, the Central Government has made it compulsory for traders and manufacturers to sell consumer items in standardised packets and weights. As per the recently amended Consumer Protection Rules, it is now compulsory for the manufacturers and traders to sell the products in standardised weights and packets. According to Mr. K.V. Thomas, Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, state governments have been asked to create a corpus of Rs 10 crore with a central share of Rs 7.5 crore to promote consumer welfare activities in the states. According to Mr. Thomas, the government also proposes to make standardization of many other consumer items like toys, gold and jewellery mandatory after the passage of the Bureau of Indian Standards Act in Parliament and also intends to curb the menace of misleading advertisements.
As per the new rule, 19 items which were earlier exempt from such an obligation will also have to follow such rules. Items like mineral water, baby food, tea, coffee and soaps besides other things will have to be sold only in standardised weights and packets. This new rule will apply from July 1, 2012.