Consumers get expert advice at grievance redress camp
NAVI MUMBAI: Kundan Pawar, 70, a resident of Kalyan, had given Rs3 lakh to a builder for booking a flat in an under-construction building in 2014.
Even as the builder had promised him the possession of the flat in December last year, he did not. The builder has stopped taking his calls.
A few days ago, he heard about a grievance redress camp to be organised by Consumer Guidance Society of India (CGSI) at MGM Law College in Nerul.
Without giving a second thought, he along with his wife reached the college campus on Friday. He narrated his plight to the officials of CGSI and showed the relevant documents.
The officials asked him to send a letter to the builder’s registered address asking for the money. If he does not pay after two reminders, they advised him to register a case at the consumer court.
Many people like Pawar turned up at college campus with their problems which ranged from electricity bills to medical insurance to property frauds. Within three hours, the CGSI officials addressed 15 complainants.
The officials at the camp were assisted by college students. They also provided a live demonstration of its electronic milk analyser, which analysed nearly 30 milk samples brought by the students.
“Cheating consumers is common in our society. Therefore, every resident should be aware of his rights while buying a service. We are trying to help as many people as possible through such camps,” said Santosh Shukla, joint secretary of CGSI.
Colle ge principal Geeta Shrivastav said the camp helped not just the complaints but students as well.
“There are many laws in our country. However, there is hardly any understanding of them among the common people. Normally, people don’t approach the court assuming it is just wastage of time and energy. So, when they face a problem, they keep wandering due to lack of legal awareness,” she said.
“The students also benefitted because Consumer Protection Act is a part of their curriculum. They saw the practical aspect of the subject in the camp. They also learnt how a common man should be made understood in simple language and not in legal words. We are planning to organise more such camps,” she added.
CGSI, the pioneer consumer organisation founded in 1966, has been working for the protection of consumer interests for the past five decades.
Its consumer complaints redressal wing receives plenty of grievances from consumers which the legal aid arm addresses on a weekly basis.
Almira Lasrado, a second year student of the college said, “I thought milk taken from all places are good and used to drink it without much thinking. But today I realised that many of such milk samples are adulterated too.”
“We also saw how old people had to struggle due to lack of legal assistance and awareness. Many of them even lose hope of getting justice even after moving the court. So the camp helped us,” she added.
There are many laws in our country. However, there is hardly any understanding of them among common people. Normally, people don’t approach court assuming it is just wastage of time and energy. When they face a problem, they keep wandering due to lack of legal awareness.
GEETA SHRIVASTAV, principal of MGM Law College
Students of MGM Law College attend the grievance redress camp on the campus on Friday.