New Delhi, Nov 9 (PTI) With demand for consumer goods on rise because of festive season, the Centre on Thursday asked white goods manufacturers and sellers to revise their warranty or guarantee policy, ensuring that warranty starts from installation date and not the date of purchase.
Consumer Affairs Secretary Rohit Kumar Singh has written a letter in this regard to six industry bodies including CII, FICCI, Assocham and PHDCCI as well as many manufacturers --Samsung, LG, Panasonic, Blue Star, kent, Whirlpool, Voltas, Bosch, Havells, Philips, Toshiba, Daikin, Sony, Hitachi, IFB, Godrej, Haier, Eureka Forbes, and Lloyd. Initiating the warranty or guarantee period when consumers are unable to use the product constitutes an unfair trade practice under the Consumer Protection Act, 2019, he said.
"As the festive season begins, there will be a concomitant increase in consumer footfalls in the market, which means a bustling period for businesses. In such a period, it is important to ensure that the message of consumer care envisaged by the Prime MInister M is kept in mind by businesses so that consumers’ interests are protected and safeguarded during their festive purchases," according to an official statement.
Therfore, the Department of Consumer Affairs has urged manufacturers and sellers of white goods to revise the warranty or guarantee policy to reflect its commencement from the date of installation rather than the date of purchase.
In a letter addressed to industry and retail associations and manufacturers of white goods, Singh has strongly advised manufacturers of white goods such as refrigerators, air conditioners, washing machines etc. revise the warranty or guarantee policy in the sale of white goods to consumers, to reflect its commencement from the date of installation rather than the date of purchase.
"White goods typically involve installation by trained technicians, and until they are correctly installed on the premises, consumers are unable to use such goods. It is observed that this practice leads to a reduction in the total warranty period which a consumer would have normally enjoyed from the time he could use the product after its installation," the statement said.
This issue is further accentuated in case of purchases made through e-commerce where an additional time is involved in the delivery of the product, it added.
The letter highlighted the importance of strengthening the trust between businesses and consumers. PTI MJH MJH