Introduction: The President of India gave his assent to the long-awaited Consumer Protection Act, 2019 ("Act") on August 9, 2019, and it went into effect on July 20, 2020. Chapter V of the Act emphasises the importance of mediation in consumer-related disputes, which encourages the parties to participate in mediation once the complaint has been admitted or at any later point. Chapter V of the Act emphasises the importance of mediation in consumer-related disputes, which encourages the parties to participate in mediation once the complaint has been admitted or at any later point.
Mediation under Section. 74: The current act has included mediation as a remedy under the Consumer Protection Act. The act does not provide a particular time frame for the completion of the mediation. Still, it does indicate that the Mediator must undertake mediation within the time and manner authorised by the rules (which is made by State and National Commissions).
By notice, the state government will create a consumer mediation cell that will be connected to each district and state commission in the state. By notice, the Central Government will create a consumer mediation unit that will be connected to the National Commission and each of the regional Benches. A consumer mediation cell will be made up of the individuals who have been designated. The mediation cell shall maintain:
• A list of empanelled mediators;
• A list of cases handled by the cell;
• Recording of proceedings and;
• Any other information as may be specified by the regulations
Every consumer mediation cell must provide a quarterly report in the manner prescribed by rules to the District Commission, State Commission, or National Commission to which it is connected.
The Consumer Protection Mediation (Rules), 2020 gives out a list of matters that cannot be referred to mediation. The new Consumer Protection Act of 2019 allows consumers to submit complaints electronically and in consumer commissioners that have jurisdiction over their (i.e. Complainant's) domicile, thereby nullifying the prior practice under the Act. For completion of mediation, the time limit permitted under the act is 30 days.
Under the Act, the parties to the dispute will have to jointly consent on the mediator's appointment (i.e. sole mediator). If the parties cannot agree on who will function as the only mediator, the concerned commission will nominate/appoint the mediator at its discretion.
In Conclusion, Mediation is critical for the timely and effective resolution of consumer issues, and it's admirable that the government has a strategy in place to hire mediators who can resolve conflicts, reducing the strain on the judiciary.
This Article Does Not Intend To Hurt The Sentiments Of Any Individual Community, Sect, or Religion, Etcetera. This Article Is Based Purely On The Authors Personal Views And Opinions In The Exercise Of The Fundamental Right Guaranteed Under Article 19(1)(A) And Other Related Laws Being Force In India, For The Time Being. Further, despite all efforts made to ensure the accuracy and correctness of the information published, White Code VIA Mediation and Arbitration Centre Foundation shall not be responsible for any errors caused due to human error or otherwise.