Central Consumer Protection Authority Investigates IAS Coaching Institutes for misleading practices but big fish face no heat

The Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA) is currently investigating allegations of misleading practices by several IAS coaching institutes, following concerns raised in various news articles across prominent media outlets. Ms Nidhi Khare, Chief Commissioner of the Central Consumer Protection Authority, has been at the forefront of this investigation, targeting about 20 IAS coaching institutes for their alleged unfair trade practices related to the publication of the Civil Services Examination Result of 2022.

The investigation, as reported by news media houses, focuses on the failure of these select institutes to disclose complete details of the courses undertaken by their successful students, including rankers. The use of pictures and names of top-rank holders without revealing the nature of the courses is considered misleading and a violation of fair-trade practices.

While applauding the CCPA’s efforts to safeguard the interests of students and parents, concerns have been raised by Ms. Parul Khera, Director and Founder of the Socially Fair Foundation. Ms. Khera’s letter to Ms. Khare highlights the omission of some significant players in the IAS coaching industry, including Vajiram & Ravi, Vajirao IAS Academy, Shubhra Ranjan, Vedanta IAS Academy, Elite IAS, Lukman IAS, Dhyeya IAS, among others, who are accused of similar unfair practices. She also cited that Vajiram & Ravi, one of the country’s most well-known IAS coaching institutes, has not been served any notice despite being a leading player and prominently featuring in national newspapers with full-page advertisements showcasing only the photograph of top rankers, their names, and All India Ranks, without disclosing crucial course information.

Ms. Khera said, “In my capacity as an activist, I have raised pertinent questions on behalf of students and prospective aspirants. We seek clarification on why notices have not been issued to all IAS/UPSC coaching institutes, especially the prominent ones, and why the focus is limited to UPSC/IAS courses and not extended to other competitive exams like IIT-JEE, NEET, Law, SSC, MBA, etc.” The Socially Fair Foundation emphasizes the need for transparency and fairness in the education sector. Ms. Khera’s questions extend to understanding the guidelines of CCPA, their dissemination to all institutes, and the criteria for selecting the 20 coaching institutes currently under scrutiny. As this issue gains attention and discussions among concerned individuals grow, the Socially Fair Foundation anticipates an early response from Ms. Khare to address these queries and provide insights into the regulatory framework governing such matters.

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