युक्ती हीने विचारे तु धर्महानि प्रजायते

About The Centre

In pursuance of one of the objectives of the West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences, Kolkata relating to research and dissemination of knowledge and to uphold socially relevant legal education, the Centre for Study and Research on Consumer Law (CSRCL) has been set up to investigate and respond to the causes behind the issues related to consumerism and consumer rights. The aims and objectives of the centre, inter-alia, are-

  • Building Ties: To build ties with social movements, organisations and agencies committed to consumer rights and contribute to public debates and academic discussions.
  • Training to professionals- To train professionals on various aspects of consumer laws and rules. The professionals include the presidents of various commissions and legal practitioners.
  • Assistance in policy-making- To assist policymakers in the preparation and analytical evaluation of legislation.
  • Organisation of events- It organises workshops, conferences, seminars, and awareness programmes and hosts lectures by experts on various issues relating to consumer affairs.
  • Creation of Database- To build a database of print, digital and visual texts on issues pertaining to consumer disputes
  • Publication- To publish journals, books, research papers and reports on issues pertaining to consumer rights and strengthen critical public discourses in society.

Structure Of The Centre

ACTIVITIES :

TRAINING PROGRAMMES :

AWARENESS AND OUTREACH PROGRAMMES FOR SCHOOL AND COLLEGE STUDENTS :

The Training Programme on Consumer Protection Law was organised by the Centre for Study and Research on Consumer Law (CSRCL), West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences, Kolkata in collaboration with the Department of Consumer Affairs, Government of West Bengal.
The programme witnessed deliberations by the following speakers-
i) Smt. Roshni Sen, Principal Secretary, Department of Consumer Affairs, Government of West Bengal
ii) Mr. Faisal Fasih, Assistant Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
iii) Dr. Lovely Dasgupta, Associate Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
iv) Ms. Vaneeta Patnaik, Associate Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
v) Dr. M.P. Chengappa, Assistant Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
vi) Dr. Sujata Roy, Assistant Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
vii) Prof. (Dr.) Nirmal Kanti Chakrabarti, Vice-Chancellor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
viii) Dr. Shouvik Kumar Guha, Assistant Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
ix) Dr. Shameek Sen, Associate Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
x) Prof. (Dr.) Anirban Mazumder, Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
xi) Prof. (Dr.) Ashok R. Patil, Chair Professor, Consumer Law and Practice, NLSIU, Bengaluru

The programme was divided into 15 sessions spread over three days from August 22,2022 to August 26, 2022. The sessions highlighted on various facets of consumer law including but not limited to aspects like interpreting key concepts under consumer law, product liability, role of mediation in consumer cases, e-daakhil, key issues on deficiency of services like real estate, insurance, medical services, education, banking, misleading advertisements and celebrity endorsement and e-commerce. The sessions also highlighted on the social welfare aspect of consumer law and how it aims at promoting social justice.
These sessions aimed at eliciting a deeper understanding of the application of the various facets of consumer law. The attendees found the course interesting and useful for their day to day work as the deliberations and discussions that followed helped them gain an understanding of some of the nuances of the law and how they could be applied effectively. By the end of the training programme, the attendees were able to-
– Gain an insight on how the Consumer Protection Act operates and some of the challenges of implementation of the law on the present day.
– Gain an understanding of the newly implemented provisions around dispute resolution mechanisms under the Act of 2019 by the enactment of the Consumer Protection (Mediation) Rules, 2020.
-Gain an understanding of how E-Daakhil can help in aiding the upholding of consumer rights.
-Gain an insight on how E-Commerce issues can be better addressed by the enactment of the Consumer Protection (E-Commerce) Rules, 2020.

The Training Programme on Consumer Protection Law was organised by the Centre for Study and Research on Consumer Law (CSRCL), West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences, Kolkata in collaboration with the Department of Consumer Affairs, Government of West Bengal.
The programme witnessed deliberations by the following speakers-
i) Smt. Roshni Sen, Principal Secretary, Department of Consumer Affairs, Government of West Bengal
ii) Mr. Faisal Fasih, Assistant Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
iii) Dr. Lovely Dasgupta, Associate Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
iv) Ms. Vaneeta Patnaik, Associate Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
v) Dr. Sanjay Kumar, Assistant Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
vi) Dr. Sarfaraz Ahmed Khan, Associate Professor, WBNUJS, Kolkata
The programme was divided into 15 sessions spread over three days from December 20,2022 to December 24, 2022. The sessions highlighted on various facets of consumer law including but not limited to aspects like interpreting key concepts under consumer law, product liability, role of mediation in consumer cases, e-daakhil, key issues on deficiency of services like real estate, insurance, medical services, education, banking, misleading advertisements and celebrity endorsement and e-commerce. The sessions also highlighted on the social welfare aspect of consumer law and how it aims at promoting social justice.
These sessions aimed at eliciting a deeper understanding of the application of the various facets of consumer law. The attendees found the course interesting and useful for their day to day work as the deliberations and discussions that followed helped them gain an understanding of some of the nuances of the law and how they could be applied effectively. By the end of the training programme, the attendees were able to-
– Gain an insight on how the Consumer Protection Act operates and some of the challenges of implementation of the law on the present day.
– Gain an understanding of the newly implemented provisions around dispute resolution mechanisms under the Act of 2019 by the enactment of the Consumer Protection (Mediation) Rules, 2020.
-Gain an understanding of how E-Daakhil can help in aiding the upholding of consumer rights.
-Gain an insight on how E-Commerce issues can be better addressed by the enactment of the Consumer Protection (E-Commerce) Rules, 2020.

Date: 12 August 2023
Venue: Room No. 227, National University of Juridical Science, Salt Lake
Area of Focus: Law as a career and E-commerce
Organizer: Centre for Study and Research on Consumer Law, WBNUJS
The Centre for Study and Research on Consumer Law organized an enlightening awareness programme on E-commerce and Law as a career. The event occurred at National University of Juridical Science in Salt Lake on 12 August 2023, bringing together Senior Secondary students to delve into critical aspects of consumer rights and how one can pursue law as a career including the different types of exams, books required to crack those exams and how can one ace those.
The primary objective of the awareness session was to educate participants about their rights and responsibilities in the context of e-commerce transactions and law as a career. It aimed to educate the students about the career options in law and also empower the consumers with knowledge, enabling them to make informed decisions and protect their interests in these rapidly evolving domains.
E-commerce has emerged as a transformative force in the modern world, revolutionising how people shop and access goods and services. The buying and selling of goods and services over the Internet has grown exponentially over the past few decades. Simultaneously, utility services have played a fundamental role in modern society, ensuring access to essential resources. Services include facilities like electricity, housing, insurance, water, telecommunications, legal, banking, entertainment, etc.
At the event, we had two speakers- Ms Arjita Mukherjee and Mr Atish Chakraborty who spoke about Law as a career, followed by Rights to know and E-commerce, respectively.
Ms Arjita spoke about to promote the diverse and varying human society and how studying law can help one to navigate modern complexities by increasing one’s ability to think critically and problem-solving abilities. Furthermore, the overview of Legal Education in India and the different types of Law entrance examinations in India were discussed.
Mr Atish covered the topics of who is a consumer, their rights and responsibilities while shopping online, what they should look for, the dangers of online shopping, how to enforce their rights and avail relief and the different kinds of advertisements.
The audience actively participated in the session, asking pertinent questions and sharing personal experiences. Their engagement added depth to the discussions and demonstrated a genuine interest in law as their choice of career and consumer rights.
Key Takeaways:
1. Cracking a Law Exam: The participants understood how there are different types of examinations one can take if they are interested to study law along with the different types of books that will help them to prepare.
2. Career after Lawyer: Participants gained better understanding of how one can pursue different career by studying law, in after graduation and post-graduation.
3. Life at a Law School: It was understood how the life of any law student would be after cracking the exam academic rigor, collaboration and practical learning, the extracurricular involvement, balancing challenges, and the growth that one experiences.
4. Consumer Empowerment: Participants gained a better understanding of their rights as consumers, especially in the context of digital transactions and different services
5. Privacy Awareness: Privacy concerns in e-commerce and the importance of data protection were highlighted, making consumers more vigilant about their personal information.
6. Redress Mechanisms: Information about dispute resolution mechanisms, both online and offline, was provided, helping consumers address issues effectively.
7. Case Studies: Real-life examples to understand their rights and the importance of consumer education and vigilance.

Centre for Study and Research on Consumer Law- Outreach Programme
Date: 25 August 2023
Venue: Our Lady Queen of Missions School, Salt Lake
Area of Focus: E-commerce and Deficiency of Services
Organiser: Centre for Study and Research on Consumer Law, WBNUJS
The Centre for Study and Research on Consumer Law organised an enlightening outreach programme on E-commerce and Deficiency of Services. The event occurred at Our Lady Queen of the Missions School in Salt Lake on 28 August 2023, bringing together Senior Secondary students to delve into critical aspects of consumer rights and digital services.
The primary objective of the awareness session was to educate participants about their rights and responsibilities in the context of e-commerce transactions and the deficiency of services. It aimed to empower consumers with knowledge, enabling them to make informed decisions and protect their interests in these rapidly evolving domains.
E-commerce has emerged as a transformative force in the modern world, revolutionising how people shop and access goods and services. The buying and selling of goods and services over the Internet has grown exponentially over the past few decades. Simultaneously, utility services have played a fundamental role in modern society, ensuring access to essential resources. Services include facilities like electricity, housing, insurance, water, telecommunications, legal, banking, entertainment, etc.
At the event, we had two speakers- Mr Atish Chakraborty and Ms Arjita Mukherjee who spoke about E-commerce, followed by Deficiency of Services, respectively.
Mr Atish covered the topics of who is a consumer, their rights and responsibilities while shopping online, what they should look for, the dangers of online shopping, how to enforce their rights and avail relief and the different kinds of advertisements.

Ms Arjita spoke about the meaning of deficiency and services, wherein she specifically explained medical, housing, banking, insurance and legal services. She talked about concepts like good faith, unfair trade practices, standard of proof, adequate compensation and more, all the while using real-life cases to explain the scenarios for better understanding.
The audience actively participated in the session, asking pertinent questions and sharing personal experiences. Their engagement added depth to the discussions and demonstrated a genuine interest in consumer rights.
Key Takeaways:
1. Consumer Empowerment: Participants gained a better understanding of their rights as consumers, especially in the context of digital transactions and different services
2. Privacy Awareness: Privacy concerns in e-commerce and the importance of data protection were highlighted, making consumers more vigilant about their personal information.
3. Redress Mechanisms: Information about dispute resolution mechanisms, both online and offline, was provided, helping consumers address issues effectively.
4. Case Studies: Real-life examples to understand their rights and the importance of consumer education and vigilance.

Date: 7th September 2023
Venue: Rabindra Bhawan, Arambagh
Area of Focus: Law as a career and E-commerce
Organizer: Centre for Study and Research on Consumer Law, WBNUJS
The Centre for Study and Research on Consumer Law organized an enlightening outreach awareness programme on E-commerce and Law as a career. The event occurred at the Rabindra Bhawan in Arambagh on 7th September 2023, bringing together Senior Secondary students to delve into critical aspects of consumer rights and how one can pursue law as a career including the different types of exams, books required to crack those exams and how can one ace those.
The primary objective of the awareness session was to educate participants about their rights and responsibilities in the context of e-commerce transactions and law as a career. It aimed to educate the students about the career options in law and also empower the consumers with knowledge, enabling them to make informed decisions and protect their interests in these rapidly evolving domains.
E-commerce has emerged as a transformative force in the modern world, revolutionising how people shop and access goods and services. The buying and selling of goods and services over the Internet has grown exponentially over the past few decades. Simultaneously, utility services have played a fundamental role in modern society, ensuring access to essential resources. Services include facilities like electricity, housing, insurance, water, telecommunications, legal, banking, entertainment, etc.
At the event, we had four speakers- Mr. Faizal Fasih, Sayari Saha, Ms Arjita Mukherjee, and Mr Atish Chakraborty who spoke about How to crack competitive Law exams & Life at a law School, Law as a career followed by Rights to know and E-commerce, respectively.
The program was started by Mr. Faizal Fasih by giving a brief overview of Law as a Career. He enlightened the students present their with his view and experience with his career in law, along with giving an overview of what they can expect out of the outreach program.
Sayari Saha presented and spoke about how she cracked CLAT and how other students can crack such competitive exams, the materials required to crack such exams & method to prepare for the exams. She also created interest among the students by sharing her own experiences and stories at NUJS.
Followed by, Ms Arjita spoke about to promote the diverse and varying human society and how studying law can help one to navigate modern complexities by increasing one’s ability to think critically and problem-solving abilities. Furthermore, the overview of Legal Education in India and the different post-graduation courses available along with the career options that are available in India were discussed.
Finally, Mr Atish covered the topics of who is a consumer, their rights and responsibilities while shopping online, what they should look for, the dangers of online shopping, how to enforce their rights and avail relief and the different kinds of advertisements that are used for the purpose of promotion.
The audience actively participated in the session, asking pertinent questions and sharing personal experiences. Their engagement added depth to the discussions and demonstrated a genuine interest in law as their choice of career and consumer rights.
KEY TAKEAWAYS:
1. Cracking a Law Exam: The participants understood how there are different types of examinations one can take if they are interested to study law along with the different types of books that will help them to prepare.
2. Life at a Law School: It was understood how the life of any law student would be after cracking the exam academic rigor, collaboration and practical learning, the extracurricular involvement, balancing challenges, and the growth that one experiences
3. Career after Lawyer: Participants gained better understanding of how one can pursue different career by studying law, in after graduation and post-graduation.
4. Consumer Empowerment: Participants gained a better understanding of their rights as consumers, especially in the context of digital transactions and different services
5. Privacy Awareness: Privacy concerns in e-commerce and the importance of data protection were highlighted, making consumers more vigilant about their personal information.
6. Redress Mechanisms: Information about dispute resolution mechanisms, both online and offline, was provided, helping consumers address issues effectively.
7. Case Studies: Real-life examples to understand their rights and the importance of consumer education and vigilance.

Date: 16 September 2023

Venue: Room No. 107, National University of Juridical Science, Salt Lake

Area of Focus:  Education as Service 

Organizer: Centre for Study and Research on Consumer Law, WBNUJS

The Centre for Study and Protection of Consumer Law (CSRCL) in West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences (NUJS), Kolkata, organised a “Consumer Law Awareness Program” on September 16, 2023 for Amity University Students, from both legal and non-legal backgrounds. This program addressed the everyday issues that consumers face, who unconsciously become victims of fraud played by the sellers.

Inaugural Session

The program began with the felicitation of the Vice Chancellor of NUJS, Prof. Dr. Nirmal Kanti Chakraborty, who graced the program and spoke a few introductory words on consumer law. He emphasised the requirement of enacting the Consumer Protection Act in the background of globalisation and the requirement of giving protection to consumers belonging to weak sections of the society. He also pointed out the three-tier consumer dispute redressal forums at the District, State and National levels and the settlement of disputes through mediation, which the Act establishes as an alternative to the regular court proceedings. Finally, he reiterated the vision of CSRCL to spread awareness among the common people on consumer laws to safeguard themselves from the fraudulent practices of the sellers.

Education as Service: Prof. Dr. Lovely Dasgupta, Associate Professor, NUJS

The first lecture was delivered by Prof. Dr. Lovely Dasgupta, who provided insights into how the Consumer Protection Act, 2019 expanded its scope but did not include education as a service. She pointed out how, culturally, education was never considered a service in India. Nevertheless, with the advent of coaching institutes and private tutors, the concept has slightly changed concerning them. While the traditional school and college education would not be considered a service, as understood in the Act, because there are certain regulatory norms put in place by the Government, the education provided by the coaching institutes and private tutors could still be considered a service. In this respect, she also talked about the standard form of contracts, which do not give a choice to the consumer to negotiate the terms of the contract.

Introduction to Consumer Rights: Prof. Faisal Fasih, Director, CSRCL

The second lecture was delivered by Prof. Faisal Fasih, who briefly touched upon various aspects of consumer rights. He began by explaining the interplay of three parameters of consumer law: first, the capitalists, who seek to maximise profit, second, the consumers, who seek to maximise utility and third, the state, which tries to balance the interests of the capitalists and the consumers. He then explored the concepts of the standard form of contracts and how the majority of the Indian population does not understand the implications of the contracts that they enter into. Next, he briefly explained how this issue aggravated with the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic and the growth of e-commerce, and then on misleading advertisements. After this, he spoke extensively on the food and pharmaceutical industries, which are mostly responsible for looting and damaging the consumers’ health. He gave several examples of maintenance drugs, dairy products, Cadbury and Maggi. Finally, he emphasised the importance of individual autonomy in making informed choices regarding the products they want to consume, for which there is a dire need for awareness.

Misleading Advertisement: Ms. Arjita Mukherjee, Assistant Director, CSRCL

The third lecture was taken by Ms. Arjita Mukherjee, who began by explaining advertisements’ influence on our daily lives. She explained the distinction between puffery and misleading advertisements, with the former referring to subjective perception or opinions while the latter statements being incorrect or improbable claims based on facts. She then explained various types of advertisements: legal, misleading, and illegal. She then proceeded to misleading advertisements, which are now regulated after the 2022 Notification by the Government of India. She then explained the five categories of misleading advertisements with examples from advertisements we grew up watching. Next, she explained the meaning and implications of endorsements by celebrities, who, after the recent 2023 Notification from the Government, are now required to take due diligence before signing up to endorse a product. Finally, she concluded with what could be considered a valid advertisement.

Introduction to E-Commerce: Mr. Atish Chakraborty, Assistant Director, CSRCL

The final lecture was taken by Mr. Atish Chakraborty, who took up the recent issues and problems related to e-commerce. He began by enumerating the rights that e-commerce consumers have, like the right to complete information regarding the product, access to several varieties or options, protection in terms of return or exchange policy, awareness, and dispute redressal mechanism. He then went about explaining what needs to be kept in mind while shopping online, like taking due diligence by looking at the authenticity of the website/seller, reading the terms and conditions of the products carefully, using strong passwords, checking for the padlock when paying online and many more. He concluded by reiterating the dangers of online shopping, like huge discounts and payment fraud.

The question-and-answer session that ensued was an eye-opener for the attendees, as they raised pertinent and intriguing questions, with practical and real-world answers given by Prof. Faisal to pressing concerns raised by the attendees. There was a highly positive response to this program from the attendees, who were willing and enthusiastic to come for another awareness program.

 

RESEARCH PROJECT :

The Centre has recently undertaken an impact assessment study on the functioning of District Commissions of West Bengal and imploring solutions to ensure speedy redressal of cases in collaboration with the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Government of India and Consumer Affairs Department, Government of West Bengal. The same is currently at the stage of preliminary research through secondary sources and is intended to be completed within the stipulated time frame of 1 year.

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