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Analysis Of Sansad TV Discussion: ”Right To Repair”

Analysis Of Sansad TV Discussion
”Right To Repair”


”GS 2: Issues Arising Out of Design & Implementation of Policies, Government Policies & Interventions”
”GS 3: Environmental Pollution & Degradation”


  • Apple recently announced that consumers will have the right to purchase spare components of their products.
  • Google also announced plans to expand access to the parts and tools that consumers need to fix their own devices.
  • These announcements by big-tech companies follow widespread calls for Right To Repair reforms.
  • In fact, Right to Repair Bills have slowly been working their way through legislatures in different countries.

What is the Right to Repair?

  • Right-to-repair advocates argue that modern tech products are designed and made in such a way that it becomes nearly impossible for an individual or third-party service center to repair a product.
  • Since tech companies have made it so hard to repair a device, people have no option but to replace it with a new one or take a faulty device to the company’s service center and pay a huge amount of money for its repair.
  • This is the reason why advocates are pushing for the “right to repair” as it will put pressure on manufacturers to make their products more repair friendly and let third-party repair service providers access authentic tools, parts, and information.

What is right to repair campaign?

  • The right to repair movement is a global campaign seeking to ensure that everyone has the right to fix their devices.
  • Even today, consumers can open a device and fix it on their own. The problem is, that neither individuals nor third-party (other than authorised by the brand itself) have access to proper guiding manuals or tools.
  • Launched in 2019, Europe’s right to repair campaign is made up of environmental activists, self-repair advocates, community repair groups, and any citizens who want the right to repair.
  • They want to remove barriers stopping consumers from repairing their products.

How will these reforms help in protecting the environment?

  • Reducing waste is one of the most important things we can do to protect the environment.
  • Electronic waste, also known as e-waste, is made up of electrical or electronic items, such as appliances, computers, smartphones, televisions, cameras, toasters, and more.
  • Right to repair seeks to cut down on e-waste by allowing people to repair their devices, which extends their lifespan and reduces how often we need to replace electronics.
  • The Global E-waste Monitor 2020 report, published by the United Nations University, found that 53.6 million metric tons of e-waste were generated in 2019.
  • The amount of e-waste generated globally has grown by 9.2 million metric tons since 2014, and is expected to exceed 70 million metric tons by 2030.
  • An average of 2.5 million metric tons of electrical and electronic equipment is consumed every year. By 2030, the amount of e-waste will have doubled in only 16 years.
  • The report found the growth of e-waste is “mainly fueled” by high consumption rates of electrical and electronic equipment, short life cycles, and few repair options.
  • By repairing our devices, we can extend their life cycles and slow the rate of e-waste mounting up. Instead of replacing our devices every couple of years, we can make them last longer and reduce waste.

The six Rs of sustainability

The six Rs of sustainability are principles we should keep in mind when trying to reduce our environmental impact. They are:

Rethink: do you need to buy this? Should you get it secondhand instead?
Refuse: don’t buy what you don’t need
Reduce: use less, waste less
Repair: is it really broken, or can you fix it?
Reuse: reuse or repurpose before throwing away
Recycle: make sure to recycle everything you can.

Where does the Right to Repair movement stand today?

  • As of 2021, more than 32 U.S. states have proposed legislations to the right-to-repair act, while only the state of Massachusetts has passed a law.
  • The Motor Vehicles Owners’ Right to Repair Act passed in 2012 required automobile manufacturers to provide necessary documents to allow third-party technicians to repair their vehicles.
  • U.K.’s Right To Repair law took effect from July 1, and it requires appliance manufactures to provide consumers access to spare parts and make complicated parts available in professional repair shops.

Right to Repair in the Indian Context

  • In India, currently, there’s no legislation or any provision dealing with ‘Right to Repair’ but the judgement of the Competition Commission of India, in the case of Shamsher Kataria v Honda Siel Cars India Ltd. is treated as a turning point wherein, 14 automobile manufacturing companies were held liable for engaging in anti- competitive practices and abusing their dominant position, by only selling spare parts only to authorized dealers and not to independent markets.
  • The CCI order, enabled consumers to make a choice between independent mechanics and authorized dealers and to help independent mechanics to provide aftermarket services and ensure healthy competition in the market. India is world’s third largest contributor to e-waste, behind U.S. and China. Earlier, urban areas were the biggest contributors to e-waste but due to pandemic, mobile phone revolution in the rural areas has added some more waste to the existing pile.
  • India has a legal framework to manage e-waste problem since 2011. The e-waste (management and handling) rules addresses not only to handle the waste in an environmentally friendly manner, but also has laid down rules about its transportation, storage and recycling.
  • These regulations have had little impact and a strict law is needed for proper implementation.


The Right to Repair is a keen battle between the customer and the manufacturer. The right to repair can apply to any industry. With people across the globe becoming dependent on technology and electrical devices, countries that are proposing the ‘Right to Repair’ laws have different goals to meet such as e-waste, sustainability, carbon neutral goals etc.

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