NGO to observe Consumer Rights Awareness Fortnight

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Panaji, Mar 2 (UNI) The Goa Civic and Consumer Action Network (GOACAN) has been observing a Consumer Rights Awareness Fortnight since yesterday.

The programme seeks to address the lack of awareness on consumer rights, the complaint procedures and redressal mechanisms available to consumers in Goa, according to its coordinator Roland Martins here today.

It highlights the need for "consumer literacy" so that the latter makes an effort to understand their rights and write their complaints. It joins with consumer organisations world wide to focus on Food and Medicine Safety and its importance to the health of the consumers on March 15, observed as the World Consumer Rights Day.

The NGO will lay special emphasis to support consumer international campaigns to stop the marketing of unhealthy food to children and the generation of junk food. GOACAN will also intensify the national level crusade in Goa against the spread of counterfeit, fake, spurious and adulterated goods.

During the fortnight, the NGO will visit super markets, grocery stores, pharmacies and shops selling electrical goods to check products and take samples, to check the bus transport service and the implementation of weights and measures rules.

Consumer Forum activists will also organise "phone in's" with the Commercial Tax, Legal Metrology, Food&Drug Administration, Civil Supplies, Transport and other related Departments.

Doubtful Gift schemes and Investment offers, violations of Packaged Commodities Rules and the ISI mark will be highlighted during this fortnight.

A special drive to check violation of consumer rights in Banks will be organised in an effort to reach complaints to the Headquarters of various public sector Banks, the Banking Ombudsmen for Maharashtra and Goa and the Reserve Bank of India.

During the fortnight, consumer activists will publicise the official telephone and fax numbers of the various departments at the local and State level, highlight the redressal avenues available such as the Consumer Conciliation Committee, District Consumer Redressal Forums and Public Grievance Redressal officers at the Taluka and District level.

Complaint formats and procedures for redressal of LPG, Kerosene, Electricity, Telephones, Postal and PWD water supply will also be publicized.

UNI BM SR SM1502

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