Govt to roll out convergence platform for early redressal of consumers’ complaints

In an attempt to provide prompt relief to aggrieved consumers, the Ministry of Consumers Affairs, which is headed by Ramvilas Paswan, is ready to offer one stop solution platform for the same. In a major overhauling of the existing system, the ministry is all set to start a new system christened as convergence platform for early redressal of consumer’s problems mainly product and service related complaints against e-commerce players.

According to a senior official, the ministry has strengthened consumer helpline service to address the woes of aggrieved consumers at entry level only. “As online shopping business is becoming an order of the day, complaints are also coming in manifold against e-commerce majors such as Myntra, Flipkart, Snapdeal, Amazon, etc for deficiency of services, which is a gross violation consumers' rights.”

“We have brought all major e-commerce players on the convergence platform as partners. The complaint received at consumer helpline number would be immediately sent to concerned firms with a notice to resolve the issue within a stipulated timeframe. Besides, the ministry will keep a close watch on every complaint by a regular follow-up,” the official said.

“It has been noticed that most of the issues are of generic nature which can be resolved by discussion or some other corrective measures, but due to irresponsibility of service providers, consumers are forced to go courts for the relief, which makes whole process as cumbersome. The platform will help in providing prompt relief to aggrieved consumers vis-à-vis any sector,” the official added.

“Complaints such as delivery of wrong product, poor quality, untimely refund, etc can be easily addressed at first level. Some 216 companies belonging to 41 business sectors have already been registered as convergence partners with the ministry. The service is on trial mode now and it is expected to be launched by Consumer Affairs Minister Ramvilas Paswan soon,” the official said.

Explaining about operational mechanism, the official said, “It would work on three-layer redressal system. At first stage, the complaint would be registered and transferred to concerned company. If consumer wouldn’t get satisfied with the response, it would be sent to regulator and on the condition of consumer not getting any relief from regulator, the aggrieved consumer would be provided with all the details to register case in consumer courts.”
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