Slap on the Wrist: Fashion Brand Fined for Surprise Bag Fees

Charged Rs 7 for paper carry bag without his knowledge, man granted Rs 3,000 damages by Delhi consumer court

When Anmol Malhotra walked into a Lifestyle clothing store in December 2020, he didn’t expect to walk out 7 rupees lighter for a simple paper bag. But the Delhi Consumer Dispute Redressal Commission ruled on November 28th that the popular fashion brand should not have charged Malhotra without first informing him of the fee. The commission ordered Lifestyle to pay Malhotra 3,000 rupees in damages for the sneak attack bag charge and the resulting “harassment and inconvenience.”

The core question the Commission sought to resolve was whether stores can levy extra carry bag charges without giving advance notice to shoppers. Lifestyle claimed that with plastic bags now banned, they have switched to more expensive paper bags and were merely trying to recoup those costs.

But the Commission came down firmly on the side of consumer rights. They ruled stores cannot suddenly burden shoppers with surprise fees, saying it impairs “his rights to make an informed decision” about where to shop.

So next time you’re checking out with a new wardrobe in hand, make sure to take a peek at that receipt. Retailers have to lay all charges out clearly beforehand rather than slapping on secret fees even for simple items like bags. If they fail to inform, you may just get a sweet payout to carry home your new clothes in style.

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I'm Rajdeep Singh, a journalist at Deccan Era. With a passion for truth, I bring you unbiased news, dissecting complexities to keep you informed. Committed to journalistic integrity, I shape meaningful conversations.

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