Consumer affairs ministry sources said they had made a request to list the bill in Rajya Sabha in the next three days. The ministry has prepared the regulations that the government needs to notify after the bill becomes law. “To our understanding, no political party will oppose the passage of the bill and it has already been approved by Lok Sabha. If it lapses, we will have to start from scratch after formation of next government,” an official said.
While addressing global leaders at an international conference on consumer rights in October 2017, PM Narendra Modi had said Consumer Protection Bill was on the top priority of the government to empower consumers and to put a check on malpractices including adulteration.
The preparation to amend the existing law had started during the fag end of UPA-2. But actual work started after Modi government took charge and greater focus was put on to curb misleading advertisements and endorsements by celebrities, which often influence people while buying a product or availing a service.
The bill also provides for setting up of a central authority which consumers could reach out to for protection. This was incorporated considering that in most cases, consumers don’t lodge complaints as there is no single authority to take up their case. A small fraction of them approach consumer courts where the process takes long for people to get justice.