Companies

Traders, start-up body call for regulatory action against Amazon

Our Bureau Bengaluru | Updated on October 15, 2021

Move comes after reports of alleged copying of products, rigging of search results by the e-commerce giant

Following reports of Amazon copying products and rigging search results to promote its own brands in India, industry bodies have come out strongly against the global e-commerce major.

A recent report by Reuters claimed that Amazon’s private-brands team was exploiting internal Amazon.in data to copy products sold by other companies and then sell them on its marketplace. It also found that the company’s employees were rigging search results so that Amazon products would appear in the first two or three search results.

The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) called for an immediate CBI investigation into the charges made against Amazon. CAIT National President BC Bhartia and Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal said, “Copying the products and rigging the search is a grievous offence. This has been an ulterior design to kill the domestic small manufacturers and traders directly contravening the Atmanirbhar Bharat vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.”

A CAIT delegation plans to meet Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal and press for its demand for an immediate CBI enquiry and other necessary actions immediately by the government. Meanwhile, CAIT is also convening an emergency meeting of its National Board composed of prominent trade leaders of all States to decide the future course of action on the issue.

The Alliance of Digital India Foundation (ADIF), a think-tank for India’s digital start-ups with about 422 members, called for regulatory intervention against the charges on Amazon. Sijo Kuruvilla George, Executive Director, Alliance of Digital India Foundation (ADIF), said: “Timely action on the part of the regulators is the need of the hour and speed is also of the essence – more and more brands get killed with the passage of time. A situation where Amazon, or any player for that matter, acts as the powerful online marketplace, seller and collector of data, cannot bode well for the health of the e-commerce market, neither will it be in the interest of the consumers – both in the short term and the long term.”

He added that the development also brings to attention the significance and importance of good data protection laws for the health and prosperity of digital markets.

Published on October 15, 2021

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