Consumer Alert – No.12

September 2014                                                                         No. 12

How healthy are malt-based beverages?
Read more

Educational institutes excel in exaggeration!

The competition among educational and coaching institutes is stiff. But that’s no reason for making false and misleading claims.

Stay safe online

The internet offers many opportunities and useful information at our fingertips. We download content, make online transactions and use social networking sites. While doing all this we are revealing personal information. Find out how to keep personal data secure online.   Read more


Canara Bank reverses charges for cheque book delivery   

HDFC loses share certificate of flat, arranges for copy

What your gas agency didn’t tell you 

Are you aware that you are entitled to up to Rs. 40 lakh risk cover in case of loss of life, injury or damage to property due to LPG cylinder explosions?

New ad norms for fairness creams

The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), a
self-regulatory body, has released a set of guidelines for advertising skin lightening and fairness products in India.


Exchange offer turns sour, garage owner told to refund money

Postal authorities made to cough up PPF deposit interest 

Can an appellate authority grant conditional stay?

The Consumer Protection Act, 1986 requires a party challenging an order in appeal to deposit a prescribed amount at the time of lodging the appeal. Can the appellate authority direct the appellant to deposit further money to grant conditional stay?
Read more

Have a complaint? Go on Twitter

Tired of your consumer complaints going nowhere, despite making numerous phone calls and sending emails? Take your complaints to Twitter. The company concerned is likely to act immediately and take damage control measures.  Read more

Tax on sugary drinks in latest Budget 

Prices of fizzy sugary drinks will increase with the Government levying an excise hike in an attempt to curb consumption.

Insurance buyers don’t need to reveal lifestyle diseases

Sold goods can always be returned

Make doctors write prescriptions in capital letters: MP

Rajendra Agrawal, MP from Meerut, feels doctors often write illegible prescriptions  putting patients at risk.

Stricter labelling norms for packaged food

New Bill limits Rlys’ liability in case of accidents

The cancer tests you really need—and those you don’t

Based on talks with experts and review of current research,Consumer Reports Health gives you useful advice on when you should go in for cancer screening.  Read more


Mobile phone use linked to skin allergy

Two meals better than six for some diabetics

Beat those hunger pangs with pulses


CP Act Amendments

CERC has sent detailed comments on the Draft proposed by the Ministry of Consumer Affairs for amendments to the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 making nearly 40 suggestions.

CERC’s City Centre

Renewable Purchase Obligation

Roundtable on Counterfeit Food Products 

Hotelier-philanthropist and CERS Trustee Jehangir Cama passes away

Ahmedabad-based hotelier and philanthropist who started the Cama Hotel, one of the first luxury cum business hotels in the city in 1960, Mr Jehangir R.J. Cama, passed away on 25 August 2014.   Obituary

Women Empowerment

The  Sexual   Harassment   of  Women at  Workplace (Prevention,  Prohibition and  Redressal)  Act  2013

Employer Responsibilityunnamed (10)

  1. To provide a Sexual Harassment free work environment.
  2. Every  workplace having 10 or more employees is  required to constitute an Internal Complaints  Committee -ICC.
  3. The details of the ICC should be put on the notice  board of the office.
  4. To conduct Workshops and Seminars to Sensitize Employees

 Employee Duties

  • Check if your office has an ICC
  • Complain if you face any kind of Sexual Harassment  ( Mental, Verbal or Physical) to ICC


For Non Compliance the employer would be liable to be punished with a fine up to Rs. 50,000 and thereafter double penalty and cancellation of his license to conduct business.

Courtesy : Ruzan Khambatta

Your Right to Service

The Right To Services* Act, whose official title is the ‘Government Servants Regulation of Transfers and Prevention of Delay in Discharge of Official Duties Act, 2005’, was one of the demands (along with the Right to Information Act) raised by crusader Anna Hazare during his anti-corruption campaign.
Thanks to the relentless efforts of activists, an Ordinance was issued on August 29, 2003. It became an Act on 12 May, 2005 and came into effect on 1 July, 2006. Further, the Rules for the Act were framed on November 14, 2013.

Your Right to Service

 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  • What is the difference between the RTS* and the RTI Acts?
  • What is a Citizens’ Charter?
  • What are the key features of the RTS Act?

Learn more


Buildings cannot be legally demolished without a commencement certificate

Under the current redevelopment scheme, buildings cannot be legally demolished without a commencement certificate. Dated: May 19, 2014.

TO prevent loss of life and to encourage residents of privately-owned highly dilapidated structures to vacate their dangerous premises, the BMC, in its proposed guidelines to the Bombay High Court (HC), has introduced new conditions for redevelopment of such structures.

Under the current redevelopment scheme, buildings cannot be legally demolished without a commencement certificate (CC), which mandates an agreement between occupiers/tenants and landowners/developers.
However considering the urgency in demolishing highly dilapidated and dangerous (C-1 category) structures, the BMC is willing to allow demolition without the CC, and to stall fresh construction on the site till residents/occupiers reach an agreement with landowners/developers.

The corporation has proposed imposing these conditions in the initial sanction — the Intimation of Disapproval (IOD) — granted for proposals pertaining to redevelopment of C-1 buildings, which may be demolished by the civic body as part of its preventive disaster management action.

Only after such an agreement, which suitably compensates and accommodates occupants elsewhere, is filed with the civic body, will commencement certificates (CCs) be issued for these redevelopment projects under section 45 of the Maharashtra Regional and Town Planning Act, 1996.

Last week, in its petition to the HC, the corporation had submitted these draft guidelines for tackling evictions/evacuation of residents from ‘C-1’ category dilapidated buildings (highly dangerous and in need of immediate evacuation), which are privately-owned, municipal-owned or cessed structures.

As reported by Newsline, the corporation has proposed to forcibly evict residents from these premises irrespective of their ownership and demolish the dangerous structures under section 354 of the Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act of 1888. Currently under this legal provision, the

BMC can only serve notices, but no follow-up action is possible.

For civic-owned and cessed structures maintained by MHADA, the BMC has proposed that alternate accommodation will be provided by the civic body and MHADA itself until the building is reconstructed.
BMC’s lawyers E P Bharucha, S U Kamdar and advocate JJ Xavier suggested these conditions be put in place to safeguard the rights of tenants and occupants unwilling to vacate C-1 structures.

“In case privately owned buildings are demolished by the corporation in exercise of power under section 354, then the corporation shall, while granting sanction of redevelopment, impose a condition in IOD that no CC will be issued unless and until an agreement either providing a

permanent alternate accommodation in a newly constructed building

or settlement is arrived at by and between the tenants and/or occupier and the landlord in respect of the said demolished premises is, filed with the corporation,” says the draft guidelines submitted to the HC.

As per data, there are approximately 593 C-1 structures under various ownerships across Mumbai. The tally is likely to increase as more structural audits of buildings aged over 30 years, are being carried out.

The state has told the HC that it is currently in the process of deliberating on the guidelines and the matter has been adjourned to June.


J.B.Patel (Jeby)
Housing Societies’ Activist