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Duped customer moves consumer centre, gets refund

Staff Reporter

Practice of manipulating maximum retail price tags is high in the city

BERHAMPUR: Consumers are being cheated through manipulated and relabelled price tags. A trader of the city, who has conned a woman by sticking enhanced price tag on the original one of a grinder, has to repay the whole amount due to intervention of the Consumer Advice Centre in the city.

Satish Kumar Panigrahy, one of the advisers of this Indo-German Collaborative pilot project for protection of consumer rights, says the present case is only a tip of the iceberg. According to him, cheating by sticking high price tags on the old Maximum Retail Price (MRP) on the products is quite high.

Usually unscrupulous traders stick new price tags to increase the price of a product and sell it at a claimed discounted price which is higher than the hidden MRP of the product. This type of cheating continues as gullible customers fail to protest against the practice. Decision of a woman to bring this racket to the fore became an eye-opener for other general consumers.

Discount attraction

According to the Consumer Advice Centre, a woman, Usharani Mangaraj, purchased a grinder from a trading unit in Sana Bazar area of the city on July 11. The sticker of MRP pasted on the product showed its price at Rs. 4,990. The trader offered a major discount and sold the product to the woman at Rs. 3,700.

But when the woman checked the price tag, she could find that a new price sticker was pasted on the original price tag. In the original price tag, the grinder MRP was Rs. 2,990. The woman realised that the trader duped her in the name of providing hefty discount. As the trader refused to take back the product and repay the amount, she approached the Consumer Advice Centre. The advisers of the centre intervened and made the trader understand that he had violated statutory provisions of Standards of Weights and Measures (Packaged Commodities) Act and Consumer Protection Act. As per the law it amounted to cheating as the original price tag had been manipulated. The trader preferred to repay the amount.

The consumer activists advised consumers to be careful while checking the MRP labels of products.

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