The Newz Radar
DHARAMSHALA: A consumer court at Dharamshala in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh has slapped a penalty of Rs 25,000 on a liquor vendor for selling alcohol bottles at rates higher than the maximum retail price (MRP) mentioned on label. The court announced the verdict on Tuesday (September 12, 2023) and also asked the vend owner to cough up another Rs 10,000 as litigation cost.
The legal action came on a complaint after the liquor shop vendor based at Kandi in Dharamshala had levied an extra charge of Rs 400 on a purchase totalling Rs 2,240. The suit was filed by advocate Aashima Kalra, whose friends had visited Dharamshala as tourists and were overcharged by the liquor vendor.
Despite the consumer’s request to refrain from imposing the additional charges, the vendor didn’t budge. Aashima Kalra said the practice of liquor shop vendors overcharging customers above the MRP was seen at several places and mostly tourists were fleeced.
“It has become an accepted norm and a very few people are inclined to challenge it or engage in confrontation, resulting in the continuance of this unfair practice. Every year, a lot of people visit Himachal Pradesh from all over India.
Many of these visitors buy alcohol from shops, but they often end up paying more than what they actually should. This happens because they are tourists and they don’t want to argue with the shopkeepers on account of primarily three reasons First, the extra money isn’t a lot for them. Second, they’re on vacation and don’t want any problems.
Third, even if they did want to do something, they might not have the time or resources to fight a case, especially in a different state,” she said. Aashima Kalra said the shopkeepers know all about this very well and take advantage of the tourists’ situation and charge them more money without worrying about getting in trouble.