Consumer Rights

Food adulteration has become a common practice in recent years in Bangladesh. Many of the bazaars, hawkers and even the supermarkets get fined by the Mobile courts due to low grade quality of the foods and harmful substances used in the commodities. This practice has lead to many harmful long-term effects on the consumers over the years. Such effects mostly lead to causing cancer like colon, peptic ulcer diseases, chronic liver diseases including cirrhosis and liver failure, electrolyte imbalance and eventually kidney failure. Furthermore, mixing chemicals and too much pricing are other activities of violation of consumer rights which also causes harms to human health. The existing rules under Cr. PC and Penal Code are strong enough to deal with it. Section 272 & 273 state out the legal ramifications of such acts of adulteration which includes fine amounting to Tk. 1000 and imprisonment ranging to 6 months. The authorities concerned should have a strong will to implement the rules. There is also the Safe Food Act 2013 which the government has implemented to fight adulteration and protect public health. The Bangladesh National Parliament has passed the Food Safety Act, 2013 on October 10, 2013 (after repealing and re-enacting the existing outdated laws in this regards) in order to make provisions for the establishment of an efficient, effective, scientifically based Authority and for regulating, through coordination, the activities relating to food production, import, processing, stockpiling, supplying, marketing and sales as well as to ensure the people’s right toward access to safe food through appropriate application of scientific processes and state of the art technology.

Right to food has been recognized worldwide as an inalienable human right. For the survival of a human being, among the all basic necessities food is the first one because it's not only human being but all the living creatures on the earth requires food for their living. Article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and Article 11 of the International Convenient on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) has adopted the right to food in spite of the millions of children who are suffering from malnutrition, dying for food scarcity and also undernourishment. Bangladesh being a state parties of these international instruments and specifically being a state party (signed and ratified in 1990) of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989), are obliged to implement the conditions of the international treaties.

JWF aims to help Bangladesh to have the basic need such as food to be free from any form of harmful chemicals which may be poisonous to health and allow people to consume them without any worries or ramifications of consumption. JWF endeavors to also protect the citizens of Bangladesh from harmful practice of unscrupulous businessmen who sell inferior products at higher price. This has over the years resulted in many of the consumers of food & drinks to suffer various health diseases, for cosmetic buyers to end up with permanent damage to their skin and increasing imports of products causing domestic currency to flow out of the country. JWF members are diligent in protecting and allowing consumers to know of their rights and fight beside them in order for them to get justice. JWF’s fight is to prevent any and all harmful practices carried out by the domestic syndicates for allowing people to live a better life with good health & mind.

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