News

CAA raids door-to-door ‘mobile’ traders

  • Quality, pricing checked as mobile sales grow

  • Salt shortage rumour mongers warned

By Buddhika Samaraweera

 

The Consumer Affairs Authority (CAA) has commenced conducting frequent raids to inspect whether the goods that are being sold by door-to-door mobile traders meet necessary quality standards and are being sold at the stipulated prices.

Due to the travel restrictions that have been presently imposed to control the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic in the country, mobile sales activities are on the rise, and the CAA’s regional offices are currently working on looking into the mobile sales activities islandwide.

“The CAA is conducting raids to investigate whether such traders are working in a way that is unfair to the consumers, and we are also constantly looking at the quality of the products that they sell,” CAA Raids Division Director Asela Bandara told The Morning, when contacted.

He further said that shops that have been opened under special permission would also be inspected.

Accordingly, the regional offices of the CAA have taken steps to conduct raids covering the Districts of Gampaha, Colombo, Puttalam, Ampara, Ratnapura, and Monaragala.

However, in view of the prevailing situation, legal action being taken against those who trade in a manner unfair to consumers has been minimised during these raids, he said, adding that the traders would instead be strictly warned and released.

Meanwhile, it has been reported to the CAA that certain traders are spreading false rumours that there is a shortage of salt in the market, and are thus selling salt at a higher price.

Bandara said that following the receipt of such information, officials of the CAA’s Hambantota District office had conducted an investigation to ascertain whether such was in fact the case. Accordingly, several salt factories including the Hambantota Saltern were inspected and it was revealed that their production activities were proceeding as usual. He added that therefore, legal action would be taken against those who cause unnecessary salt shortages in the market and thereby inconvenience consumers.