Consumer Rights and Consumer Awareness

Everyone purchases and sells things; this is how the economy works. We know that the political world has given us some rights, but do any rights help us against the exploitation of the economic world? What rights does the government give us to protect us against exploitation by sellers, and how much are we about it?

Who is a Consumer?

A consumer consumes or uses any good or service made available to him, whether it originates from natural resources or a market. According to the 1986 Consumer Protection Act, the word consumer is derived from the Latin word "Consumere", which means to consume or to eat completely. A consumer who purchases goods and uses services is subject to any deferred payment system or is partially paid and partly promised.

Consumer Rights

Consumer rights were established to protect the interests of consumers. In today's society, consumer rights are established and efficiently executed. The different governments of the nations have appropriately conveyed consumer rights knowledge. Individuals in the Western world are more conscious of their consumer rights than those in nations such as India and other developing countries such as Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, etc. Only the educated elite know their consumer rights, while the impoverished and uneducated classes are still oblivious to their rights. Consumer rights include the following:

Right to Safety

Due to technological advancements, a large range of goods and services are now offered on the market, necessitating safe handling. Some of these products require technical expertise, and many customers need to know how to utilize them safely; they might also need more technical expertise to evaluate the safety features of goods and services. Therefore, from the consumer's perspective, product safety is of the utmost importance, and it includes consideration for both short-term needs and urgent customer demands.

Right to a Healthy Environment

It is the right to a physical environment that will improve one's quality of life; it covers defense against environmental threats that people cannot influence; it recognizes the importance of preserving and enhancing the environment for both current and future generations; in reality, the right to a healthy environment implies all of the rights that people have in every area of their lives; it is legal. The right to a healthy environment is significantly violated by factors such as dirty groundwater supplies or air filled with harmful gases at a local level, as well as ozone depletion. Global warming and an increase in toxic waste.

Right to Information

Consumers have a right to accurate and sufficient information from any public authority regarding any development and all consumer goods and services. The information must be exchanged back and forth between the people and the development authorities. A crucial component of the right to life development and social justice is the right to information. The management and governance of society must be open to the public. The effectiveness of consumer groups, whose operations rely on facts and figures normally available to public and commercial organizations, needs to be improved by a need for more information access.

Right to Choose

Participation of the public in national decision-making is critical to a democracy. Freedom of choice the consumer has the right to select and purchase the goods of his choosing. He ought to have access to a large range of products, allowing him to select the one he wants. A savvy consumer strives to maximize happiness when using the funds at his disposal, which includes buying what s/he wishes. In other words, various goods should be available on the market to give consumers a choice. The consumer is forced to purchase the offered product at the seller's pricing in a market where choice is not accessible; consumers are not given the option to select the products of their choosing.

Right to Redress

Consumers have a right to pursue redress when they experience issues with the goods or services they have paid for. They are entitled to a just resolution of their legitimate complaints. Consumers may file complaints if a product's performance or quality exceeds expectations. Consumers can protest unfair commerce, illegal practices, or unscrupulous exploitation. The ability to seek redress against deceptive business practices or blatant consumer exploitation is made possible by the right to seek remedy.

Right to be Heard

The right to be heard entails the ability to speak up for the interests of consumers to be fully and sympathetically considered when monetary and other policies are being developed and implemented. It also involves the right to participate in developing goods and services before they are manufactured or set up and in governmental and other policy-making bodies. Individuals have a right to be heard in matters about consumer welfare, and they can share their opinions in a variety of forums. Right to redress right to consumer education.

Right to Consumer Education

It refers to gaining the knowledge and skills necessary to make educated purchasing decisions throughout one's life. The right to consumer education includes the right to the information and skills required for taking action to change the variables that influence consumer decisions. Consumer education gives people the information they need to become informed consumers globally. The right to consumer education refers to the consumer's right to know and be informed of any environmental developments that could influence his decisions.

Right to the Satisfaction of Basic Needs

The consumer is guaranteed the fundamental products and services necessary for survival under the right to basic needs. To live a decent life, one needs enough food, clothing, shelter, health care, education, cleanliness for many civilizations and nations, and the right to basic needs. In the developing world, a customer's basic requirements are sufficient food, clothing, and shelter. In contrast, in the United States or Europe, the basic needs of a consumer are understood to be the fair quality of consumer goods or timely assured and accountable services. In a broader sense, every consumer has the right to the necessities and services that provide a life of dignity; this includes having access to enough food, clothing, shelter, healthcare, clean water, education, and transportation.

Consumer Awareness

A person who purchases items or contracts for any service for valuable consideration, including postponed payment, is referred to as a "consumer." The phrase excludes people from it who acquire products or services for resale or any other business use. However, those who solely use goods or services to support themselves through self-employment are "consumers." Every consumer should be aware of their rights, and if they are not, the seller should inform them of their rights as dutiful citizens and should not exploit them. There have been numerous cases where the buyer has been exploited, which is a crime.

Today's market is swamped with a vast quantity and variety of goods and services. The number of producers and final sellers of commodities has likewise multiplied several times. As a result, determining who is a genuine manufacturer or vendor has become extremely difficult. It is nearly impossible for customers to interact with a producer or merchant in person. Furthermore, in the age of improved information technology, the physical distance between customers and producers/sellers has expanded because consumers may get their commodities delivered to their door by booking orders over the phone or the internet, for example. Similarly, determining whether many items are real has become quite difficult.

People believe that if a product appears in an advertisement, it must be good, or the producer whose name is known through advertising must be offering the appropriate thing. However, this is not always the case. Much information is purposefully withheld in certain adverts in order to mislead customers. In the case of packaged food and medications, an expiry date indicates that the product must be eaten before that date and not at all after that date. This information is critical since it concerns the consumer's health. Sometimes such information needs to be supplied, or the merchant purposefully does not supply it since the buyer did not ask for it or notice the inscription printed on the object.


Everyone has been granted the right to protect themselves against exploitation. We have basic consumer rights, as we are in this demand and supply cycle. Nevertheless, many people are unaware of their basic rights as consumers, due to which many are cheated and lied to. The government ensures that every person has the freedom to practice their rights, and inhibiting someone is a punishable offense.

Updated on: 05-Apr-2023


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