Though its journey began seven years back aiming to protect consumer rights, Directorate of National Consumer Rights Protection (DNCRP) has failed to make people aware about its own activities, let alone showing a good performance, reports UNB.
However, the right protection body is now planning to build seven software apps to reach out to people, and give the consumers an easy option for lodging their complaints through their mobile phones.Besides, DNCRP authorities said, they are going to launch a vigorous campaign to make consumers aware of their rights and about the organisation itself so that people could come up with their complaints.
“People are still in the dark about the activities of the DNCRP...even many people don’t know the existence of such a government body,” said Ashis Kumar Dey, general secretary of the National Committee to Protect Shipping, Roads and Railways.
The government should take effective measures, especially media campaign, to make people aware to strengthen the organisation and make it popular among common people, he said.
Chairman of the Institute of Water and Environment Engineer M Enamul Haque alleged that lack of proper accountability of top officials’ of the DNCRP, the organisation failed to get desired response from mass people.
Mass people still do not know that the government has such an organisation which has been working to protect consumer rights, he added.
Contacted, Ghulam Rahman, president of Consumers Association of Bangladesh (CAB), said most consumers are yet to know that they can get remedy after lodging complaints with the DNCPR offices instead of filing cases with courts only for lack of publicity.He also thinks the DNCRP cannot perform well and make people know about it due to inadequate fund and manpower.
The CAB president said the DNCRP must take more initiatives, including airing documentaries and advertisements in both the electronic and prints media, to bring dynamism in its activities and reach out to the consumers.
Contacted, DNCRP director general Shafiqul Islam Laskar claimed that they have been trying to create awareness among consumers about their rights since the inception of the body, despite having various limitations, including inadequate manpower and funds.
He also claimed that the DNCRP is getting hue complaints every day as the consumers are now very aware of their rights.
Laskar said they have already sought funds from the government to carry out a vigorous awareness campaign to strengthen the DNCRP further.
“We’ve planned to build seven software apps, and three of them will be available by the next fiscal year. So, the consumers will be able to lodge their complaints through their mobile phones in the coming days,” he said.
Sources at the DNCRP said it has so far earned around Tk 25 crore as fine from various companies and trading houses since the Consumer Rights Protection Act-2009 (CRPA-2009) came into effect on 6 April, 2010.