Role of Services Sector in Consumer Protection and Welfare With Special Reference to Banking Sector P.

Buvaneswari* ABSTRACT Protection of the consumers is an issue of paramount consideration in the modern economic world order. With globalization having permeated into all strata of the society, lending a makeover to the concepts of trade and business, the face of consumerism too has undergone a substantial change. It can be adduced without any hint of doubt that consumers are the real driving force of the economy and thus the sustenance of the present economic order relies, to a large extent, upon the adequate protection and welfare of the consumers. However, it has been noted time and again that although consumer is portrayed as the cornerstone of a successful economy, there have been oft repeated incidents of exploitation of the consumers, leading to a constant urge of a panacea. It is interesting to note that protection of the consumers has been a cause of concern dating back to the Vedic ages. There were criminal offences prescribed for the cases of adulteration of foodstuff, charging of excessive prices and selling of forbidden good etc. Later Kautilya’s Arthashastra prescribed certain standards viz., a Director of Trade as a preventive measure for cases of exploitation of the consumers ; sowing the seeds of consumer welfare and awareness along with the objective of protection. Thus, one notes that protection of the interests of the consumers isn’t a recent phenomenon and has been in existence since time immemorial. With the passage of time, the concept of consumer protection attained new heights which led to a codification of such welfare legislations, both at the domestic as well as international levels. 9th April,1985 is a red letter day in the history of consumer protection movement as the United Nations General Assembly adopted general guidelines on Consumer Protection (General Assembly resolution 39/248) which were a representative of seven years of negotiations and discussions among Governments worldwide, governmental agencies and the private players. The highlighting feature of the guideline was the recognition of the fact that consumer protection hinged on the promotion of just, equitable and a sustainable economic and social development.
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Further. Article 39(b) enjoins upon the state the duty to ensure that ownership and control of the resources are distributed with the objective of attaining common good. Regulatory reform in the banking sector is facilitating greater competition. In the post independence era. At the municipal level too. particularly in light of the abolition of the last remaining Interest. the year 1986 will always be considered to be the Magna Carta of consumer movement in India as the Consumer Protection Act. Department of Bank Management. the Industries (Development and Regulation Act) 1951 was legislated with an objective to protect and regulate the development of the Industries as well as the interests if the consumers as envisaged under the Industrial Policy Resolution. Karaikudi . Increased competition strengthens safety and Page 2 of 3 . detrimental to the common interests. E-mail-id: pbuvaneswari@gmail. The laws are designed to prevent businesses that engage in fraud or specified unfair practices from gaining an advantage over competitors and may provide additional protection for the weak and those unable to take care of themselves. The Constitution of India. a number of consumer welfare oriented legislations were enacted with an overall objective of protecting the interests of the consumers in different spheres. Article 38 directs the State to secure a social order for the protection and welfare of the citizens.630004. Alagappa University. 1969 was enacted with the objective to ensure that the operation of an economic system did not result in the concentration of economic power. For instance. Consumer protection laws are designed to ensure fair competition and the free flow of truthful information in the marketplace. thereby enshrining the same in the Preamble.*Research Mobile No: +91-9884553427. 1948. However. The Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practices Act. The Act was to provide “for better protection of the interests of the consumers and to make provisions for the establishment of consumer councils and other authorities for the settlement of consumers’ disputes and for matter connected therewith”. since its very inception has recognised the significance of securing to all the citizens an economic justice. the issue of consumer protection has given significant attention.1986 (hereinafter the Act) was brought into force. This was the first legislation of its kind in India which solely aimed at remedying the pitiable plight of the consumers who were often victims of unfair trade practices and faulty services rendered to them. Consumer Protection laws are a form of government regulation which protects the interests of consumers.

To study the Global Consumer Protection in Various Countries 5. Non-performing assets. Technology in Banking. Foreign banks. More attention needs to be paid to the question of banking consumer protection. Objectives of the Study The study depicts the following objectives 1.soundness. State Bank of India. To offer Suggestions. To study the Consumer Protection in USA 4. Banking Codes and Standards Board of India. To study the Consumer Protection in India. Consumer protection. Private sector banks. 2. Reserve Bank of India. but it can also bring disruption and anxiety to consumers. Reforms. 3. Page 3 of 3 . Risk mitigation. Public sector banks. Financial services. To study the Consumer Protection and Banking Sector. Retail banking. Foreign direct investment. Keywords Banking. ICICI Bank.