World Consumer Rights Day observed in Kohima

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Dimapur, March 15: World Consumer Rights Day was observed today on the theme “Trusted smart products” at Kohima Law College.
Delivering the key note address, President of Nagaland Voluntary Consumers’ Organization (NVCO) Kezhokhoto Savi said it is important to create better awareness among the consumers and the traders and to also pressurize the authority to take timely action in correcting the prices of goods and services in the State.
The observance of World Consumer Rights Day is an annual occasion for celebration and solidarity within the international consumer movement. More importantly, it is a time for promoting the basic rights of all consumers, for demanding that those rights are respected and protected and for protecting the market abuses and social injustices which undermine them, he said.
On the theme of World Consumer Rights Day, Savi said this world consumer rights day, we want to highlight what consumers want and need from a connected world and how important it is to put them at the heart of the development of these digital products and services.
The emergence of smart technology brings many opportunities for consumers, access to new services, more responsive products, greater convenience and choice. There are, however, some significant causes for concern: lack of security, privacy and meaningful choice over how we use them, as well as a lack of clarity about who is responsible when things go wrong. He said today the subject of consumer protection is of vital concern and important for every citizen of the country as each one of them is a consumer in one form or the other.
Assistant Professor Moasenla spoke on ‘The exploitation of consumer rights in the State.’ She said consumers are exploited and cheated daily in many ways such as under weightment, adulteration, charges of exorbitant prices, sub-standard goods, deficiency services, expiry goods, etc.
In today’s scenario of globalisation, consumers have no control over where the products or commodities they use come from. Safety of natural food products is also a problem of growing concern since due to increased chemical inputs in farm, our food supply is being contaminated with pesticides and chemicals. This poses a grave danger to consumer health, she said.
For non-vegetarians, the problem is even more serious since food animals are being fed anti-biotics to fight diseases among animals and boost their growth. This can have serious repercussions on consumer health, she added.
Assistant Professor Soni Tep spoke on ‘The role of women in promoting consumer rights.’ She said women consumers not only constitute 50% of the total consumer population but also make 80% of all purchase decisions. Women have the dual role of family-makers and work professionals to play. As a result, they have less time, increased pressures and are slowly being de-linked from their traditional knowledge bank. The market takes advantage of this situation by offering to women instant services and products, like fast-food, ‘two-minute’ snacks, and refrigerators and washing machines with supposedly better technologies, she said.
Topics including consumer rights, duties, awareness, alertness were presented by four students. (Page News Service)