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Consumer Velocity @ NCH
(Toll Free No.: 14404, 1800-11-4000)

Oct 2017               The fortnightly e-newsletter of the National Consumer Helpline
Inside the issue



Snapshot of activities


CPGRAMS Complaints


Goods & Service Tax



Consumer Kaleidoscope

To seek information, advice and guidance on consumer problems

National Consumer Helpline

Toll Free Numbers

14404, 1800-11-4000

(All Working days)
09.30 AM to 05.30 PM
SMS your name and city to
+918130009809 (Charges Apply) .

Editorial Team

Editor in Chief:
•Prof. Suresh Misra

Consulting Editor:
•Mr. G. N. Sreekumaran

Editorial & Design Team:

• Ms. Deepika Sur
• Ms. Sunita Manik
•Ms. Deepika Sur
•Mr. Prabhat Kumar
•Mr. JN Prajapati
•Dr. Mamta Prajapati
•Mr. Ashish Gaur
•Ms Sunita Manik
•Ms. Sunanda Dey

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Editorial Team

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The National Consumer Helpline (NCH) is a project of the Dept. of Consumer Affairs, Govt. of India and operates under the umbrella of the Centre for Consumer Studies, Indian Institute of Public Administration New Delhi. The web portal developed by NIC is the platform to record and handle complaints received at NCH. In addition, ‘Consumer App’ launched by the Dept. of Consumer Affairs can be downloaded from Google Play to register complaints. The web chat facility is also available for consumers for any enquiry that they may have.

NCH does the following:

Information & guidance:NCH advises, guides and handholds the aggrieved consumer and makes efforts to get his complaint resolved. It provides a platform to escalate complaints to companies for redress and resolution.

Alternate Dispute Redressal system (ADR): The alternate dispute redressal system has 315 companies as convergence partners. Convergence companies have got login credentials to redress consumer complaints on the portal itself.

Big Data Analytics:Analysis of data helps in knowing trends - sector wise, time scale wise and the different patterns that emerge from analyzing and stratification of the data collated.

Research & Advocacy:Based on the analysis done, specific type of complaints affecting a large number of consumers is highlighted to the organization and to the Department of Consumer Affairs, and the information is shared with consumers at various platforms.

Data for the Period 1st-15 Oct 2017

In the first fortnight of Oct (1-15) 2017, National Consumer help line registered 21,269 dockets on the portal - Out of this, 14225 complaints were handled at Toll free number, 1021 calls were made to SMS received, and 6409 complaints were registered on the Website. 11 complaints were reported through “Consumer App” .On the web chat facility, 476 user’s queries were handled. On an average 43 users are contacting NCH per day through web chat.
State-wise Dockets Registered: 

The number of calls received from top ten states in descending order is Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Delhi, Rajasthan, West Bengal, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Gujarat and Bihar.

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Major Complaint Sectors: 

Major complaints were received from e-commerce, banking, telecom, consumer electronics and durables.

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Besides consumer awareness, NCH also works towards 'making Corporates responsible’ in resolving consumer grievances at the prelitigation level itself, by having an alternate redressal mechanism .Currently over 315 brands are listed under the ‘convergence’ programme. All companies have partnered with NCH voluntarily.

A wide spectrum of companies in sectors ranging from consumer electronics and durables to services such as Banking, Insurance, Electricity, Telecom to diversified sectors such as Automobiles, Courier, Tours & Holidays are all ‘convergence’ partners of NCH. Complaints received are accessed by the nodal person (SPOC) of the company who is also responsible for uploading the responses. 9,306 complaints were registered for convergence companies and 2,839 (i.e. 30%) were responded to. Resolution provided could be partial, complete or educative. The Website registered a hit count of 1,19,001 from 1st- 15th October 2017.

Broadband Sector:

Type of complaints received In the Broadband sector: :

  • 36% complaints relate to delay in complaint redressal by customer care: not getting the stipulated broadband speed from service providers , online amount deducted but connection not recharged or installed , despite disconnection consumers are getting bills , email and SMS alerts for paying bills , change in subscription plan without informing customer , inflated bills etc.

  • 17% complaints relate to connection going down very frequently , delay in restoring the connection , technicians not visiting the site to restore the connection , not able to contact customer care, getting inflated bills in spite of connection being down.

  • 7% complaints relate to non refund of security amount after disconnecting, delay in collection of modem , non refund of installation charges for a connection not provided.

NCH also responds to complaints forwarded by the Department of Consumer Affairs received on .This is a Govt. of India Public grievance portal administered by DARPG for citizens to voice their grievances. From 1st -15th October 2017, NCH received 206 complaints and redressed 48 out of them.

From July 1, 2017, Consumers in India are required to pay Goods and Services Tax (GST). Since it is a destination based tax, it is levied at all stages right from manufacturer up to the final consumer.

Docket Registered for GST in the period -1-15 October 2017
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(Recent announcements in Consumer Interest)

  • Adulteration in Sweets

  • During Diwali and the marriage season, sweet shops are flooded with variety of traditional sweets and mithais. The increase in demand could often lead to compromise in the quality because of adulteration. Adulteration is addition of any material which could make the food unsafe, misbranded, sub-standard or contain extraneous matter.

    • Beware of Colorful Mithai: Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has provided standards for some 15 food colors in their permissible limits. Excessive use of colors in food can damage the kidneys and the liver in the human body.

    • Avoid Khoya and Chena Sweets: Most of the Indian classical sweets are prepared using Khoya and Chena, which are easily adulterated with starchy source like potato, arrow root (ararot), tapioca (saboodana). Adulteration can be checked by boiling a small amount of the sweet with water. Cool the solution and add few drops of iodine solution. Presence of blue color indicates starch.

    • Chandi ka wark: Traditional Indian sweets are made more appealing by using chandi ka warq / Silver foil. Silver foil is mostly adulterated with aluminium. Silver foil when burnt will turn into a shiny ball while aluminum turns into grayish black brittle residue.

    • Ghee or Vanaspati or Refined oil used: Ghee/Vanaspati/Refined oils are used to prepare sweets and savoury products. Ghee is mostly adulterated with vanaspati. Vanaspati ghee being a good source of trans fat, leads to accumulation of cholesterol leading to heart diseases. Reused refined oil is mostly used in frying which is injurious to health.

    • Packaging: Packaging is an equally important factor as it directly comes in contact with the food. Paper, if used in packaging, must be clean, sterilized , impervious and free from any loose color or odour. Plastic, if used in packaging, must be food grade, clean and free from any odour.
    So while buying sweet points to be kept in mind are:
    • Always buy from a branded sweet shop.

    • Check for FSSAI License / Registration no. of the shop.

    • Always taste and smell the sweets before buying. They must be fresh.

    • Colorful sweets look appetizing but select sweets without color or with less color.

    • Select sweets made out of nuts. Nuts are good source of nutrients.

    • Chena sweets must be refrigerated at the earliest and consumed within 24 hours.
    In case of any problems, consumer can complain as per the given hierarchy –
    • Tier I: Nodal Officer / Customer care of the company/ Retail outlet

    • Tier II: Commissioner of Food Safety of the State / Union Territory

    • Tier III: Central Food Authority, FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India)
    Source: Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006; Food Safety and Standards (Food Product standards and Food Additive) Regulations, 2011

  • P2P Lending
  • P2P Lending is the abbreviation for ‘peer to peer lending’

    Many companies provide a platform, or marketplace, for borrowers and lenders to interact. Lenders and borrowers have to register to use this platform. The P2P platform providers earn their revenue, from lenders and borrowers, based on how much money is loaned.

    The P2P platform, using algorithms match lenders and borrowers based on a lender’s risk-taking ability and a borrower’s credit worthiness. This results in varying interest rates for borrowers, i.e., return for the lenders. These platforms also use alternative credit scoring metrics, besides credit scores from credit bureaus.

    Rise of P2P Lending:

    Peer-to-peer (P2P) lending service providers have been around since early 2014 but for investors looking to put some money in this space there was a fear of the sector not being clearly regulated under standard guidelines.

    Now, all P2P lending companies are to be registered as nonbanking financial companies (NBFCs) as per the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) guidelines announced on 4th October 17. RBI, as regulator, has clearly defined the limits for borrowers as well as lenders on these platforms.

    Lending Limits:

    Many lenders find P2P platforms attractive because of their potential for giving higher returns, compared to fixed and savings bank deposits. In fact, these platforms also market their services by comparing their returns (ROI) with the returns from mutual funds. It is important to note here that these platforms cannot guarantee any return. They are only a regulated intermediary between lenders and borrowers. And as the loans are unsecured, if a borrower defaults, the entire loss is borne by the lender.

    Thus, RBI has imposed limits on the amount that can be loaned and how much can be borrowed by individuals from these platforms—to limit the risk exposure of individuals. Limits have also been imposed on how much a person can lend to a borrower individually on one platform, as well as across all the P2P platforms combined. Before the RBI guidelines, there were no specific limits and the platforms were free to take their own decisions. Now, a person can lend a maximum of Rs50,000 to a single borrower. And an individual’s total exposure to P2P lending cannot be more than Rs10 lakh, across all the platforms combined.

    If you are a lender, allocate only a small part of your investments to P2P platforms, as there can be loss of capital.

    Borrowing Limits:

    P2P platforms are useful for those who are unable to get loans from traditional sources like banks or other NBFCs— maybe because they don’t have a credit history and at a higher interest rate.

    No borrower can have loans of more than Rs10 lakh, from all the P2P platforms combined; and no more than Rs50,000 from one lender. All loans through P2P platforms come with a payback period that cannot be more than 36 months. The borrowing and lending limits will be imposed based on certificates obtained from the borrower or lender, which is a self-declaration.



    National Consumer Helpline 
    Centre for Consumer Studies , Indian Institute of Public Administration
    Toll Free :
    14404 , 1800-11-4000 (All days -09.30 AM to 05.30 PM )
    SMS can also be sent to +918130009809 (charges apply) mentioning the name and city .
    You can also register your complaint on mobile application "Consumer App" of Department of Consumer Affairs and website

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