Hyderabad: The Legal Metrology Department of Telangana has slapped a fine of Rs 13.4 lakh on six outlets of hypermarket chain DMart in Rangareddy district for tampering with the MRP. The highest fine of Rs 2.9 lakh has been imposed on a Dmart outlet at Vanasthalipuram followed by Rs 2.5 lakh on a store at Ramanthpur. The department has also asked DMat stores at Sanath Nagar and Kushaiguda to pay a fine of Rs 2.25 lakh each.The other two outlets at Champapet and Kukatpally will have to cough up fines of Rs 2 lakh and Rs 1.5 lakh respectively, said officials.
The action against DMart was the outcome of several complaints by consumer rights activist Umesh Kumar. Based on his complaints, Legal Metrology officials had earlier seized goods from each and every DMart outlets.In October 2019, Umesh Kumar had filed a complaint with the Legal Metrology department, alleging that DMart outlets in the state were selling imported goods like toys by putting their own labels and removing details, including the name of the manufacturer.
Srikhande Umesh Kumar, who is also the president of NGO Know Your Rights Society, told Newsmeter, “MRP is usually fixed by manufacturer or packer as per the law. However, DMart outlets are changing the MRP as per their wish by removing the original MRP on imported items.” Umesh Kumar said the outlets are cheating consumers by tampering with the maximum retail price. “I have made several complaints against DMart outlets for violating laws. As demanded, the Legal Metrology Department took stringent action against these outlets by imposing a huge fine on them. Happy that they have been fined. If they again indulge in these violations, then the DMart stores should be seized.”
The activist added, “Consumers should be aware of their rights. They are being cheated by big supermarkets like DMart by manipulating MRP on the products. An empowered consumer is a smart consumer. These companies are amassing money through unfair trade practices. Regular inspections should be done at other DMart branches in the country.”