Igniting Ideas For impact

Embarking on a transformative journey through six chapters, we traverse India's landscape, exploring pioneering startups and their revolutionary...

10 months

Unfair To Charge For Paper Carry Bags, says Consumer Forum; Fines Bata Rs 9000

If you are paying for paper bags, perhaps a change is coming. The consumer forum has just asked Bata to provide them for free to all customers, given that a carry bag is essential to the purchase of the product #ConsumerRights

Unfair To Charge For Paper Carry Bags, says Consumer Forum; Fines Bata Rs 9000

Remember having to pay a few extra bucks, every time you ended up at a store without a carry bag? Well, that’s about to change.

In a bid to position themselves as ‘eco-friendly’ and responsible, or simply to comply with the plastic ban, many brands embraced carry bags made of paper and fabric. Unfortunately, the price of this bout of consciousness falls on the customers who are innocently asked, “Madam, carry bag?” and then are billed for it.

Putting an end to the practice, the Chandigarh Consumer Forum recently released a statement against Bata India, causing ripples in the retail industry.

Photo Source: Wikipedia

Dinesh Prasad Raturi, a resident of Chandigarh, filed a complaint against Bata India on February 8. In the complaint lodged, he alleged that he had purchased a pair of shoes for Rs 399 and was charged Rs 402. The bill clearly stated extra charges for the paper bag. According to Dinesh, Bata was also using the paper bags to endorse their brand which was not justified.

According to reports, the complainant had bought a pair of shoes from a Bata store in Sector 22 D on February 5 and was charged a total bill of Rs 402, inclusive of the charges for the bag. Dinesh added that the bag which bore the store’s name was forced upon him though he had not opted for it.

Also Read: Knowledge is Power: 5 Crucial Consumer Rights Every Indian Should be Aware of

His allegations were then investigated and once legitimised, the forum slammed Bata for the extra charges. In its judgement, the Consumer Forum stated that forcing a customer to pay for a paper bag is a clear deficiency in service as it’s the store’s duty to give environment-friendly free bags to the customers who purchase products from them.

“If Bata India is an environmental activist, it should have given the same to the complainant free of cost . . . . He never intended to purchase the carry bag and it was to be provided by the seller, Bata,” said the Forum.

“It was an essential item for sale of product. . . By employing unfair trade practice, opposite party [Bata] is minting a lot of money from all customers, read the statement released on April 12.

Photo Source: rawpixel/Pixabay

As a result, for charging Rs 3 for the carry bag, the company has been directed to not just refund the cost of the bag (Rs 3), but also pay litigation charges of Rs 1000, compensation of Rs 3000 for causing mental agony by deficiency in services, as well as deposit Rs 5,000 in the legal aid account of the State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, UT, Chandigarh. The company will also have to provide free carry bags to all its customers henceforth.

The judgement is expected to send out a larger message to all retail brands, and to consumers as well – to be aware and pay only for what you have bought.

(Edited Saiqua Sultan)

Like this story? Or have something to share?
Write to us: [email protected]
Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter

If you found our stories insightful, informative, or even just enjoyable, we invite you to consider making a voluntary payment to support the work we do at The Better India. Your contribution helps us continue producing quality content that educates, inspires, and drives positive change.

Choose one of the payment options below for your contribution-

By paying for the stories you value, you directly contribute to sustaining our efforts focused on making a difference in the world. Together, let’s ensure that impactful stories continue to be told and shared, enriching lives and communities alike.

Thank you for your support. Here are some frequently asked questions you might find helpful to know why you are contributing?

Support the biggest positivity movement section image
Support the biggest positivity movement section image

This story made me

  • feel inspired icon
  • more aware icon
  • better informative icon
  • do something icon

Tell Us More



See All