Thursday, 11 February 2016

9 ways in which a consumer gets exploited by the manufacturers

Indian market is a seller’s market and it is very easy to dupe the innocent consumers. In a developing country like India majority of the population are poor and helpless without sufficient knowledge about his/her rights. A consumer is exposed to various difficulties like physical, environmental and financial exploitation due to unfair trade practices, a consumer should be well aware of the negative impacts of consuming the adulterated foods, expired or substandard medicines or paying more for a product or service. To protect the consumers from such hazards consumer rights and duties have to be spread amongst consumers.

A person who has indicated his or her willingness to obtain goods or services from a supplier with the intention of paying for them is termed as a consumer. A consumer is supposed to be the “king of the market” that means all the production process carried out by the producers should be done, keeping in mind the needs and satisfaction of the consumers. The consumer satisfaction should be of prime importance for the producers but practically it has been observed that the needs of the consumers are neglected and their requirements remain unfulfilled. This gives rise to consumer exploitation.

When the producers cheat the consumers of their hard earned money and hurt them either physically, mentally or financially by selling goods or services, it is known as consumer exploitation. There are various ways in which a consumer gets exploited, few of which are mentioned below:

  1. High Prices: Very often traders charge high prices from their consumers than the prescribed retail price.
  2. Fake goods: It may sometimes happen that traders sell fake or duplicate goods in the name of genuine goods.
  3. Substandard quality: The traders may cheat the consumers by degrading the quality of the product and selling those in the market like expired products, defective items.
  4. Underweight and Under-measurements: the weight of the product that is being old may not be weighted correctly.
  5. Impure and adulterated food items: Edible items like oil, ghee, and spices adulteration is made in order to earn higher profits. It causes huge damage to the consumers both financially and physically spoiling their health.
  6. Lack of safety devices: Electronic goods may not be well equipped with proper safety measurements. This may cause accidents to consumers.
  7. Incomplete information: Sometimes wrong information may be provided by the sellers which misleads the consumers. It may be in terms of price, quality, expiry date, reliability, life cycle, durability, effects on health, safety and security, terms and conditions of the product.
  8. Unsatisfactory after-sale service: Many of the high cost durable items such as cars, electronic goods, home appliances require adequate after-sale service. The suppliers do not provide proper after-sale service which dissatisfies the consumers.
  9. Environmental hazards: The suppliers may cause environmental hazards like air, noise, water pollution which poses environmental threats to the consumers.
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Thus it is very necessary to provide consumer education to all sections of society in order to increase the level of consumer awareness so that they are not misguided and exploited by the suppliers and are able to stand up for their rights. In order to live a healthy and safe life it is the responsibility of each and every citizen of the country to get himself/herself well acquainted with the consumer awareness norms and regulations.

Article by Anisha Dutta
She is a content evangelist who believes that the Science of today is the Technology of tomorrow. 
She can be reached at

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