15th March is celebrated as The World Consumer Rights Day since 1983. It was inspired by President John F Kennedy, who sent a special message to the US Congress, in which he formally addressed the issue of consumer rights on 15th of March, 1962. In 1983, the consumer movement had marked this date as World Consumer Rights Day and uses it to mobilise action on important issues and campaigns. This day aims to raise awareness, protect and respect our needs and rights as consumers and also gives us, a chance to protest against social injustice or market abuse that may undermine our rights. Each year, The World Consumer Rights Day adopts a theme. This year, the theme promoted was “The Sustainable Consumer”. India celebrates National Consumer Day on the 24th of December.
“Customers are the most important visitor on our premises, they are not dependent on us, and we are dependent on them. They are not an interruption in our work. They are the purpose of it. They are not outsiders in our business. They are part of it; we are not doing them a favour by serving them. They are doing us by allowing us to do so.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
As consumers, we must be aware of what and from where we purchase our products. The packaging of the product is not only the first thing that we see but also that attracts us so that we immediately feel the need to buy it, even when we don’t require the same. On the contrary, it’s imperative to monitor the condition, price, and quantity, date of manufacturing and expiry of every product. This pandemic has made everything and everyone go online, right from the essential commodities to luxury products. E-commerce and online shopping have transformed the world, the people as consumers, by providing innumerable choices and accessibility by revolutionising the way we purchase our goods. However, purchasing online has its own set of disadvantages. For most of the products which have at least been bought for the first time, we are often sceptical as to how it would turn out to be and the value of the same. This is especially the case for people who do not have a liking or a habit of purchasing online. As for websites and apps like Amazon, Flipkart and Big Basket, who have regular customers, would be complacent as they would have an idea of the products provided by a specific retailer.
A lot of netizens write reviews and would equally provide a rating on the company’s website or on the site that we have made our purchases from. This is to make the other consumers vigilant enough to invest or not on the same product. A great number of companies would avoid negative criticisms. Every country has its own rules, laws and policies and equally provide its citizens with their rights and the protection as consumers.
“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning”
– Bill Gates
Contributed by Speniishita, Content Writer at Mitti Ke Rang
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