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Context: The Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA) has imposed a penalty of ₹5 lakh on Khan Study Group (KSG) for engaging in misleading advertisements and unfair trade practices.
- The CCPA investigated misleading claims made by KSG in its advertisements.
- In its preliminary inquiry, the CCPA found that KSG advertised various types of courses, but the information regarding the courses opted for by the successful candidates in the UPSC exam was not disclosed in the advertisements.
- The CCPA requested a detailed investigation into the matter by the Directorate General (DG) of Investigation.
- The CCPA imposed a ₹5 lakh penalty on KSG for engaging in deceptive advertising practices, particularly for not disclosing the limited number of successful candidates who had taken additional courses from the institute.
Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA)
- It is a regulatory body that was established under the Consumer Protection Act 2019.
- It aims to protect the rights of consumers by cracking down on unfair trade practices, false and misleading advertisements, and e-commerce issues that are detrimental to the interests of the public and consumers.
- It includes an investigation wing led by a Director General to inquire into violations and a Central Consumer Protection Council as an advisory body on consumer issues.
The CCPA has the following functions and powers:
- Inquiry and Investigation: The CCPA has the authority to inquire into or investigate matters related to violations of consumer rights or unfair trade practices, on its initiative (suo motu), upon receiving a complaint, or upon direction from the central government.
- Filing Complaints: The CCPA can file complaints before the relevant Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission seeking orders or directions. This includes actions such as recalling unsafe goods and services, reimbursement of the price paid, and discontinuation of unfair trade practices and misleading advertisements.
- Issuing Directions and Guidelines: The CCPA has the power to issue directions and guidelines aimed at preventing unfair trade practices and protecting consumers' interests.
- Imposing Penalties: The CCPA can impose penalties for false and misleading advertisements that are prejudicial to consumer interests. The penalties can range from a specified amount for the first contravention to a higher amount for subsequent contraventions.
- Banning Endorsers: The CCPA has the authority to ban the endorser of a false or misleading advertisement from endorsing any product or service. The duration of the prohibition can vary, with a longer period for subsequent contraventions. However, there's a provision that exempts endorsers from liability if they have exercised due diligence to verify the claims made in the advertisement.
- Issuing Safety Notices: The CCPA can issue safety notices to alert consumers about dangerous, hazardous, or unsafe goods or services.
- The Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA) is a regulatory body that safeguards consumer rights. It focuses on preventing unfair trade practices, misleading advertisements, and ensuring product safety. The CCPA plays a crucial role in promoting and protecting the interests of consumers by enforcing relevant laws and regulations. Its mission is to create a fair and transparent marketplace for consumers in India.
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Central Consumer Protection Authority: https://www.iasgyan.in/daily-current-affairs/central-consumer-protection-authority
Q. What is the role and significance of the Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA) in safeguarding consumer rights, and how does it contribute to ensuring a fair and transparent marketplace?