AIR 2003 SC 1043
V.N. Khare Cj, K.G. Balakrishnan, S.B. Sinha
17 January, 2003
Section 25 of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986
This Particular case is based on Constitutional Validity of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. A Writ petition was filed by the Defendants i.e. Vishwabharthi House Building Co-op. Society on 18th December, 1998 in front of the division bench of the High Court of Karnataka for challenging the entire section 25 of the Consumer Protection Act on the grounds that it is not at all proper and does not provide any sort of proper protection to the consumers under any sort of circumstances. The petitioners have raised a lot of claims stating that this particular act is really very helpful and it protects the citizens from any sort of frauds and discrepancies which they might face on the basis of the products or services and also from fraudulent practices of the sellers. The court had given their strong opinion on the basis of section 25 of the act which talks about enforceability of certain orders of either District, State or National Commission. A writ petition under Article 32 of the Indian Constitution had been filed too on this regard. This particular act was drafted properly in the year 1983 during a conference by UNESCO. The General Assembly and all the other member states had made the following contention on the basis of the fact that Consumer Protection Act, 1986 is actually important for the consumers so as to protect themselves from any problem. The statement was made as follows:
“Taking into account the interests and needs of consumers in all countries, particularly those in developing countries, recognizing that consumers often face imbalances in economic terms, educational level, and bargaining power, and bearing in mind that consumer should have the right of access to non-hazardous products, as well as the importance of promoting just, equitable and sustainable economic and social development, these guidelines for consumer protection have the following objectives:
(a) To assist countries in achieving or maintaining adequate protection for their population as consumers;
(b) To facilitate production and distribution patterns responsive to the needs and desires of consumers;
(c) To encourage high levels of ethical conduct for those engaged in the production and distribution of goods and services to consumers;
(d) To assist countries in curbing abusive business practices by all enterprises at the national and international levels which adversely affect consumers;
(e) To facilitate the development of independent consumer groups;
(f) To further international cooperation in the field of consumer protection;
(g) To encourage the development of market conditions which provide consumers with greater choice at lower prices.”
Issue Before the Court
Whether the Provisions and Sections mentioned clearly under the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 are actually constitutionally valid or not?
Ratio Decidendi of the Case
This Particular Case is based on the provisions of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986.
The Judgement was made by the Court in a very critical and statistical manner. The court had looked into each and every section of this act really much properly and also the court took cognizance of important cases which were involved on the basis of the Consumer Protection Act. one such case was L Chandra Kumar v. Union of India & Ors.  228 ITR 725 (SC). In this particular case the court had completely held that the constitutional provisions are vested towards the parliament and even the state legislatures along with the powers so as to divest the traditional courts which are running at our country at quite considerate portion of their work method. It was also looked that the parliament and state legislature actually possessed quite a legislative competency with effect to certain changes in the original Jurisdiction apart from the authorization hierarchy which flows from Article 323-A and B of Entries 77-79 and 95 of list 1. The reasons which are portrayed in Section 3 of the act completely state that it is really much proper and also quite justifiable that this act is helping the citizens a lot on the basis of various atrocities by the sellers and service providers. Talking about section 27 and 25 of the Act, this states that it is really very different as compared to Article 226 and 32 of the Constitution of India. Section 27 also talks about the fact that it has a clear- cut power upon the various forums i.e. District, State and also National and also the Commissions on the basis of completing certain important orders on the basis of consumer protection. A Parliamentary statute indisputably can create a tribunal and might say that non-compliance of its order would be punishable by way of imprisonment of fine, which can be in addition to any other mode or recover. It is well settled that the cardinal principle of interpretation of statute is that courts or tribunals must be held to possess power to execute their own order. There are lot of provisions which the court had analysed very much critically and also in a very observant manner so as to come into a proper conclusion of this case. After a lot of deep analysis along with taking help from some landmark cases, the court had clearly held that all the provisions under this act is constitutionally correct and they have stated that Consumer Protection Act is definitely constitutionally valid. All the sections match the articles of the constitution of India since it creates a clear authority and also it mentions about the Original and Appellate Jurisdiction of the High Court and Supreme Court. This was quite an important and fair judgement made by the court and provided justice to the state because of the fact that consumer protection act is actually helpful and does contain constitutional status without any hassle.
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