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The last 20 years have been transformative for India's consumer environment, beginning with the liberalisation of the economy in the early 1990s and continuing with the rise of online marketplaces and e-commerce today. The average Indian consumer now has a higher purchasing power and a greater willingness to spend their money as a result. In order to bring the original Consumer Protection Act up to date, the Consumer Protection Act of 2019 has been passed into law. Most of the Act's sections became operative on July 20, 2020, after being officially informed in a notification released on July 15, 2020.


Since many customers are unaware of the laws, civic organisations have stepped up to assist customers in a manner that is appropriate and to receive reimbursement for the loss or damage, which may include an additional component for emotional torment and suffering in addition to the loss of time. Since many customers are unaware of the laws, civic organisations have stepped up to assist customers in this manner.


This can be understood with the provisions of the legislation that are significant, particularly in online provisions for the acquisition of products and services, and astonishingly even online treatment and supply of medications, both of which were encouraged by a large number of people during the period of COVID-19. The role that civic societies play in assisting victim customers is an extremely essential one, specifically in relation to COVID-19 providers such as hospitals, physicians, pharmacies, and other businesses that have caused the victims a significant amount of distress.


Keywords : Definitions, Consumers, Civic Communities, Victim Consumers, and Consumers as Victims Corrective Actions Taken Via the Consumer Protection Act of 1986, Trials, and Their Implications.



The economy of India is growing at a lightning fast right now. Despite the fact that merchants are presently deceiving customers and manipulating customers in very harmful ways, new technologies have added new dimensions to the variety of goods and services that are accessible today.[1] Consumers are exploited in a variety of ways, some of which include, but are not limited to the following: misleading advertising, adulteration of food and medication, sales of counterfeit products, unnecessarily high prices, poor quality, and underhanded business practises. In addition, the advancement of technology has resulted in the appearance of new methods of manipulation, such as issues with digital money and cybercrimes, which have a substantial impact on the everyday lives of consumers.[2]


In spite of this, the significance of regulating organisations is continuously expanding along with the development of unscrupulous methods. The government plays an important role in the protection of consumers and the advancement of consumer rights as part of an initiative for socioeconomic development. This position is part of an initiative for socioeconomic development. [3]


In addition, the roles that business organisations perform in safeguarding customers cannot be overlooked. If they conduct their businesses in an ethical manner, it will be more efficient overall, which will result in time and labour savings as well as financial benefits for all parties involved, including customers, merchants, and the government.[4] Even though it is the responsibility of the government to take the initiative and develop a legal framework to safeguard customers, this does not imply that everyone else must take a passive stance and do nothing. The most effective method for safeguarding the interests of customers is for every member of society to perform their duties and obligations in an ethical and conscientious manner. [5]


Within the realms of both business and economics, the consumerist worldview is accorded a considerable quantity of importance and consideration. The customer is the central figure in every society, serving as the glue that binds the various aspects of the commercial and industrial sectors together.[6] The consumer has the legal right to receive the product in the quantity and quality that are commensurate with the amount of money that they spent on the item(s). Customers have the right to receive precisely what they pay for, not only in terms of the content of the product but also the quantity of it that they receive in exchange for their money.[7]


At the outset as well as the end of the process, the focus should be on the consumer because they are the one who ultimately drives the economy. The needs of the client are taken into consideration when developing new goods and services, which are then provided by the provider. Every company that offers a good or service to customers has two primary goals: the first is to maintain the customers they already have, and the second is to bring in new customers.[8] If the requirements of the customers are fulfilled, the manufacturer will have no problems continuing his manufacturing activities because there will be nothing standing in the way.[9]


The majority of people in India are illiterate and survive on the absolute lowest possible standard of living so that they can continue to eke out a living. India is a massive country. They put their money towards the essential day-to-day expenditures that are required for them to maintain their standard of living. They ran the danger of having members of the business community who participated in unethical business practises take advantage of them and take advantage of them. It is impossible to protect the rights of consumers in the absence of a powerful consumer organisation, which must first be established in order for this step to be taken. [10]


The work that is done by consumption and the work that is done by the consumer movement are identical. It was brought about as a result of unlawful, immoral, and improper actions taken by vendors and marketers. When merchants want to make a lot of money, they will do things like make sure there aren't enough consumer goods, change the quality of the goods, run misleading advertisements, and other deceptive practises. As a result of the industrial revolution, there are now many more products available for purchase, and there has also been an increase in the number of specialty satellite networks.[11] This has led to increased competition among sellers in an effort to move more products. As a result, they resorted to advertisements, and after some time, they began using advertisements that were not what they initially appeared to be. At that time, the only way for consumers to protect themselves from being exploited was to educate themselves on their legal rights and become active members of consumer advocacy groups. Because it is very difficult to protect people's rights if people don't know about them or how to do it, consumer education is very important to protect consumers and purchasing. This is because consumer education is very important to protect consumers.[12]



Latha&Thamaraikannan (2019) - Consumer rights are the rights that are donated to a consumer in order to protect him from being cheated by dishonest merchants and residents of the state. These rights may also serve to additional protections for those who are unable to see maintenance of them being upheld. Despite the fact that the Consumer Protection Act makes these rights crystal clear and that there are agencies such as the government, consumer courts, and unpaid consumer organisations that have had this knowledge since 1986, consumers still do not have a complete understanding of the various provisions of the Act, in particular their rights as consumers. Within the scope of this research, an effort has been made to prefabricate a look at the development of consumer rights as well as the construction of consumer rights-related cognizance among interviewees from the Crumble territory. Consumer rights are intended to ensure equitable job competition, people lines of honest content in the marketplace approximately the consumer rights, and the pre power of different redressed machineries will be an indicator of the flourishing action in consumer extortion move.


Nedumaran&Mehala (2019) - The purpose of the research is to determine the degrees of knowledge among rural consumers. In 1986, Congress passed the Consumer Protection Act with the intention of shielding customers from deceptive business practises. The Consumer Protection Act grants particular protections and entitlements to each and every individual customer. Every single customer has a duty to educate themselves about their rights and responsibilities. The information was gathered from 150 people who participated in the survey at Alagappa University, which is located in the Karaikudi division of Tamilnadu state.

Banthiya (2018) - The present day is known as the "period of customers" because of how prevalent they are in society. There is no way that a nation can ignore, either intentionally or unwittingly, the concerns of its customers. This point of view is debatable given the rapid pace at which consumer protection rules are being enacted in virtually every region of the globe. We could find an accelerated rate of lawmaking for consumers in developing countries such as Thailand, Sri Lanka, Korea, Mongolia, the Philippines, Mauritius, China, Taiwan, Nepal, Indonesia, and Malaysia, as well as in other countries. This is in addition to the consumer protection laws that are in place in the developed world. This guideline applies to India as well; there is no exception. One of the instances that should be regarded as a milestone in the history of sociopolitical legislation to protect the interests of consumers in India is the Consumer Protection Act of 1986. This act was one of the first of its kind in India.


Ameen (2017) - In today's highly competitive age, the consumer is seen as the market's monarch; however, in reality, the king is misled and exploited by his kingdom, particularly in developing and underdeveloped countries like India. Even though the government of India has passed many laws and established many organisations in order to safeguard the interests of consumers, the majority of Indian consumers are still being taken advantage of at this point.


Singh (2015) - Consumer is the individual who employs or avails of any services for a consideration which has been paid or promised or partly paid and partially promised or under any system of postponed payment. However, exploiting customers is extremely common in today's society. Customers are taken advantage of in a variety of different ways by sources that are more dominant and knowledgeable. On the other hand, consumers have a responsibility to be conscious of not only the financial and legal aspects of the selling and purchase of goods, but also the aspects pertaining to their wellbeing and safety. In addition to this, they should be conscious of their rights and responsibilities as reasonable human beings, such as the price and quality of the products that they use, the existence of Fair Price Shops, the standardisation of products, and the existence of Consumer Forums, among other things. As a result, consumer mistreatment needs to be reduced by raising adequate knowledge among customers about the rights they possess and the options available to them in the event that they believe they have been defrauded.



In India, over 76 percent of the population lives in rural regions, while only 24 percent of the population lives in metropolitan areas. The growth of India is dependent on the development of its rural areas, which can only be accomplished through the expansion of agricultural production and the industries that support it. The rural population is so preoccupied with the tasks of their daily lives that they have no time to learn about the liberties that are guaranteed to them. The majority of the market is comprised of these important pillars of the Indian economy. People living in rural and metropolitan areas, however, do not have a very good understanding of the fundamental consumer protection rights that are theirs. As a result, there is an immediate requirement to carry out research to determine their degree of knowledge regarding the rights and responsibilities associated with consumer protection. This regulated field for the researcher, so in order to cover the gap, the current study has been undertaken. This research offers assistance to policymakers in their efforts to safeguard both rural and metropolitan consumers.


  1. To gain an understanding of the degree to which consumers are conscious of the rights and responsibilities that pertain to them.
  2. To conduct an investigation into the degree of consumer awareness regarding measures designed to safeguard consumers.
  3. To investigate the role that civil society plays in terms of heightened consciousness among consumers.



The introduction of the idea of civil society in India can be traced back to the 1990s and was primarily influenced by international manifestations in the political environment following the fall of the Soviet Union. However, there is no consistent inking on civic society in India. There is a school of thought among Indian academics that is informed by prevalent western ideas and takes into account civic society in all of its modernity. The other portion connects its part and function to indigenous social experience after independence. There is a third division that is comprised of the combination of the two previous ones. In the western traditions civic society developed and is typically described in relation or in contrast to some other concept such as ‘state of nature’, state or community. Because of its imperial history, many third world countries, such as India, have inherited the beginnings of a functioning civic society.


Around the globe, there is an expansion of both awareness and the number of people participating in civic society. Today's civic society is more varied, energetic, vibrant, and influential than it was in the past. Reach of many civic society players are crossing national boundaries. Today's civic society is more vigilant and has developed the ability to protect its borders against any transgression that may be committed by the state or the market.


The contributions of members of India's civil society have been significant in the country's overall social development. The current day administrations acknowledge its part to be indispensable for development in India because of its potential reach to vast as well as remote areas and the influence it can generate. Nature and policies of the state have effect on the function of civic society towards societal development. The concept of civic society has also experienced substantial changes over the years. The concept of globalisation that is prevalent today has brought about shifts in the composition of civic society as well as the activities that it engages in. The currents research makes an effort for better comprehension of the concept of civil society and demonstrate contribution of civil society as well as identify voids and foot holes that is coming on the way for desired social and economic development in India.



Consumer Rights is an insight into what rights customer retains when it comes to seller which provides the products and services. What happens if the products that the company sells to the customer do not meet the requirements set forth by the standard? Then in that situation what should a customer do? To be more specific, the customer has rights in the court system, which they can use to battle against unethical business practises committed by companies or sellers.


  1. “Right to Consumer Education”: Information should be easily available and understandable so that consumers can make the most educated choice possible when making a buy. As the world of goods evolves and new knowledge becomes available, it is their duty to keep up with the latest developments.[13]
  2. “Right to Choose”: In addition to having access to a wide range of goods and services, consumers should be able to do business in an open, competitive, and environmentally-friendly market. The government's actions in the areas of property law, anti-trusts, and price-cutting/gouging have all contributed to this setting. As a customer, all you have to do is make intelligent choices.[14]
  3. Right to Safety: This privilege applies to any product, with the exception of automobiles, that, when used in the manner in which it was intended to be used, has the potential to cause the consumer bodily injury. When the government of the United States established the Consumer Product Safety Commission in 1972, additional attention was paid to this freedom. This organization mandated that all products be subjected to testing and bear appropriate caution markings after establishing safety and performance standards for them. The responsibility in this situation is to utilize the product in a fashion that is risk-free, to adhere to all of the instructions, and to be conscious of any future warnings pertaining to the product.[15]
  4. The Right to Redress: Clients have the right to ask for monetary or other advantages to make up for their loss if they have suffered a financial loss or otherwise felt misled due to misrepresentation, substandard goods, or unsatisfactory services. In the event of an injustice, it is their duty to pursue suitable redress; this is essential to ensure that wrongdoing is not allowed.[16]
  5. “The Right to Enjoy a Healthy and Pollution-Free Setting” - People have a basic human right to a safe and healthful place to live and work, which extends beyond the realm of consumer rights. It is their duty to make choices that lessen the negative impact they have on the ecosystem on both current and future generations.[17]
  6. “The right to be heard”: In addition to making goods and services safer, consumers' ability to voice their dissatisfaction can help shape new laws protecting consumers' rights in this area.[18]



The liberalisation, privatisation, and globalisation that took place in the 1990s brought about increased economic strength for the country, but they also increased the disparities that existed between the various social divisions and geographical areas. One of the reasons for this was that the government had to decrease its activity in social sector under the pressure of International financial and trade organisations. Instead, it granted certain rights to the residents of the country, such as the right to employment, the right to information, the right to education, and the right to access sustenance.[19] The state encouraged civic society to increase its operations on social sphere for improvements in society. The state also recognised the role of civic society in planning at all levels in enhancing transparency in government functioning.[20]


Most of the initiatives by the state to offer more space to civil society were product of efforts, campaigns and movements by different civil society organisations.[21] State in itself attempted to behave in hegemonic fashion but there was continuous pressure by civil society to modify its positions. Now, with the strengthening of democratic administration, rights to people and increasing consciousness level due to education and mass media activities under civil society are more concentrated. Today governments are at continuous glare of civil society and thus we are at a new height of civil society engagement. It would be fascinating to see in future if this contributes to societal betterment.[22]


The character of the state is shifting towards providing more liberty to individuals and towards less control on market. Role of civic society would be more and more dynamic in the years to come. Democratic pressures and factors are obligated to influence civic society towards overall development, prosperity and harmony in society.[23]



The importance of India's civil society is growing, and it is expanding into new spheres of activity as a result. Citizens participate and support its activities as the consciousness towards rights has increased and they get advantages out of their activities. Civil society is one of the efficient methods by citizens to communicate with state and market to safeguard their own interests. This research indicates that within the democratic polity in India the civic society are functioning as agent of social change, transformation and development.[24] They have been successful in making room for themselves to emerge as agents of change in the community, and their positions have been recognised and valued. On the other hand, civil society organisations that work towards the preservation of fundamental identities have neither been able to function as a change agent nor have broader acceptance in the society; as a result, their roles are becoming increasingly marginalised. Society in India has got a plural foundation and favourable co-relationship between developmental objectives and the success of civil society is broadly demarcated.




















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[5]AmithChakravarthi (2009) - A study on customer service of a government venture in the present scenario Indian Journal of Marketing.

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[8]G. Nedumaran&D.Mehala (2019) - Consumer Awareness among College Students: An Overview - https://www.researchgate.net

[9]HorenGoowalla (2015) - A study on consumer protection: Its awareness among the rural people in Assam: A case study with special reference to Jorhat district of Assam -International Journal of research and development in Technology and Management Sciences, Vol. 20, Issue 6.

[10]Ishwar Mittal & Ravi Gupta (2013) - Awareness as an Instrument to Utilize Consumer Rights: A Consumer Protection Perspective - Sandesh- Mastnath Journal of Management, Vol. 8, No. 1-4, pp. 53-62

[11]Ishwar Mittal (2015) - Consumer Awareness about Different Consumer Protection Legislations in India - Journal of Distance Education and Management Research; Vol. III.

[12]J. Deepika, D. RatanKumarai (2016) - A study on awareness on legal act of consumer protection among students - International Journal of Science and Research, Vol. 3.

[13]J. Deepika, D. RatanKumarai (2016) - A study on awareness on legal act of consumer protection among students - International Journal of Science and Research, Vol. 3.

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[16]Ishwar Mittal & Ravi Gupta (2013) - Awareness as an Instrument to Utilize Consumer Rights: A Consumer Protection Perspective - Sandesh- Mastnath Journal of Management, Vol. 8, No. 1-4, pp. 53-62

[17]J. Deepika, D. RatanKumarai (2016) - A study on awareness on legal act of consumer protection among students - International Journal of Science and Research, Vol. 3.

[18]Jamuna (2014) - Consumer awareness and attitudes towards consumer protection act 1986 - A study with reference to consumer in Virudhinagar District - Indian Journal of Applied research, Vol. 4.

[19]Mohanty, Bijaya Kumar (2007),”The Growing role of Civil Society Organisations in Contemporary India: A Case Study of the MazdoorKisan Shakti Sangathan”,Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta, R-1, BishnabghataPatuli Township, Kolkata 700 094

[20]Sankaranarayana, H. A and T. N. Shreedhara (2010), “Growth and the Holistic Social Development : A Paradox of Civil Society Movement in India”, in Debal K SinghaRoy (ed.), Interrogating Social Development: Global Perspective and Local Initiative, New Delhi, Manohar Publishers & Distributors.

[21]Oomman, T. K. (2006), “Nation, Civil Society and Social Movements – Essays in Political Sociology”, New Delhi, Sage Publications.

[22]Tandon, Rajesh (1991), “Civil Society, The State and the Roles of NGOs”, New Delhi, IDR Reports Volume 8 Number 3.

[23]Walzer, Michael (2003); “The idea of civil society: A path to social Reconstruction,” in Carolyn M. Elliott (ed.), Civil Society and Democracy: A Reader, New Delhi, Oxford University Press: 63-82.

[24]GovindJohri (2007) A Critical look at Grievance Redressal Mechanism in Indian Insurance Industry - Insurance Times.


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