Defective Good in Law

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INTRODUCTION
WHAT ARE GOODS???
Goods have been defined in the Sale of Goods Act, 1930 as every kind of moveable property other than actionable claims and money; and include stock and shares, growing crops, grass, and things attached to or forming part of the land which are agreed to be severed before sale or under the contract of sale. The Consumer Protection Act, 1986 lays down that defect means any fault, imperfection or shortcoming in the quality, quantity, potency, purity or standard which is required to be maintained by or under any law for the time being in force under any contract, express or implied or as is claimed by the trader in any manner whatsoever in relation to any goods. An average Indian consumer is noted for his patience and tolerance. Perhaps because of these two traditional traits and due to the influence of the Mahabharata, the Ramayana and the Bhagavad Gita, he considers the receipt of defective goods and services as an act of fate or unfavourable planetary position in his horoscope. When a new television or refrigerator purchased by him turns out to be defective from day one, he takes it reticently, blaming it on his fate or as the consequence of the wrongs committed by him in his previous birth. Very often he is exploited, put to avoidable inconveniences and suffers financial loss. It is rather paradoxical that the customer is advertised as the “king” by the seller and service provider, but in actual practice treated as a slave or servant. Goods are purchased by him along with the label “Items once sold by us will never be received back under any circumstances whatsoever.

WHAT ARE DEFECTIVE GOODS???
A product is in a defective condition, unreasonably dangerous to the user, when it has a propensity or tendency for causing physical harm beyond that which would be contemplated by the ordinary user, having ordinary knowledge of the product's characteristics commonly known to the foreseeable class of persons who would normally use the product. With regard to the issue of 'legal cause,' a defective condition is a legal cause of injury if it directly and in natural and continuous sequence produces or contributes substantially to producing such injury, so that it can reasonably be said that, except for the defective condition, the injury complained of would not have occurred. A defective condition may be a legal cause of damage even though it operates in combination with the act of another, some natural cause, or some other cause if such other cause occurs at the same time as the defective condition and if the defective condition contributes substantially to producing such damage. Thus, in cases involving allegedly defective, unreasonably dangerous products, the manufacturer may be liable even though you may find that it exercised all reasonable care in the design, manufacture and sale of the product in question. On the other hand, any failure of a manufacturer of a product to adopt the most modern, or even a better safeguard, does not make the manufacturer legally liable to a person injured by that product. The manufacturer is not a guarantor that nobody will get hurt in using its product, and a product is not defective or unreasonably dangerous merely because it is possible to be injured while using it. There is no duty upon the manufacturer to produce a product that is 'accident-proof.' What the manufacturer is required to do is to make a product which is free from defective and unreasonably dangerous conditions. Any consumer who receives any defective goods can make a complaint. A consumer cannot make a complaint if the defective item.

CASE STUDY:
Mahender purchased one Britannia Good Day Biscuit packet and one Little Hearts biscuit packet at a ration shop. M/s Sri Raja Rajeshwari General & Stainless Steel Shop for Rs. 17/- and got the receipt for the same. He took...
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