Is it legal to charge more than MRP? Take a look at what you can do if a shopkeeper charges you more than the MRP for any product!!
No, a retailer cannot any product above the printed MRP. It is the rule that a shopkeeper cannot sell above the MRP fixed by the manufacturer. Though a person can sell the product at a lesser price than that of the MRP or also known as the discounted price but cannot sell above it under normal circumstances. But it is not completely illegal to sell any product above MRP. There are certain exceptions to this concept, let’s have a look:
Legal Metrology Act, 2009
This act is applicable all over India. the Act got the president’s assent on 13th January 2010 and came into effect on 1st April 2011. It covers provisions regarding standards of the Weights and Measures Act 1976 and the standard of Weight and Measures (Enforcement) Act 1985. This Act comes under the Ministry of Consumer Affairs. The Act is important as it regulates the weight and measurement methods for ensuring public guarantee. Each manufacturer has to get a license from the comptroller of the Legal metrology Department. He is also the authority who gives a grant of registration to packer/manufacturer/packaged commodities. He checks that the necessary information is given on the product as prescribed by the government like manufacturer information and the products information etc. even as per the Package Commodity Rule 2007, it is illegal to sell any product above MRP (but these rules are not applicable on g]good weight above 25 kg or 25 liters).
Any retailer who is selling the product above the MRP would be liable to pay a fine or imprisonment or both. No seller can put the new sticker of MRP upon the printed MRP of the product. Under section 36 of the Legal Metrology Act, any person distributing or delivering any pre-packaged commodity that does not conform to declarations on the package shall be punished with fines up to Rs. 25,000 for the first offense, for the second offense the fine will rise up to Rs. 50,000 and for the subsequent offenses, the fine may go up to Rs. 1,00,000 with imprisonment for 1 year or both.
On 12th December 2017, the Supreme Court of India on hearing the petition by the Federation of Hotels and Restaurants Associations of India (FHRAI) ruled that the hotels and the restaurants can sell the products above the MRP. The reasoning given by the court is that the restaurant and the hotels are not making a simple sale like any retailer, they are providing extra services for their customers like the ambiance and cutlery, etc. the court has directed that the Legal Metrology Act, would not be applicable upon them and they would not be prosecuted for selling products at a higher price than the MRP.
The government has forbidden the companies from selling products at a higher price than the MRP even at the Airport. The directive is a part of the Legal Metrology (Packaged Commodities) Rules, 2011 which came into effect on 1st January 2018. This long-time duration was actually termed as a ‘breathing period’ provided to the manufacturers to get complied with the rules. The department has worked on enhancing consumer protection. No manufacturer can sell products at a dual price unless allowed by law. This rule though won’t be applicable to restraints and hotels but the rest everywhere in India is applicable.