CAIT Asks Goyal to Lead CCI Investigation on Amazon, Flipkart

CAIT also urged Goyal to immediately issue a new press release replacing FDI Policy Press Release 2 with an oversight mechanism to ensure that the law of the land prevails and that no one should dare to violate the policy, law or the rules. The CAIT also proposed that, to bring greater transparency in e-commerce, every business engaging in e-commerce activity through any type of electronic mode should obtain a registration number from the DPIIT.

CAIT said merchants across the country will observe the upcoming week of June 14 to June 21 as “E-Commerce Purification Week” in which thousands of business associations nationwide, on June 16 , will deliver a memorandum on behalf of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to their respective District Collectors urging the Union Government to take immediate action to end the continued policy and rule violations by Amazon, Flipkart and other companies similar e-commerce companies funded by foreigners.

The traders’ delegation will meet with their respective state’s chief minister and finance minister and ask small traders not to face any backlash from e-commerce companies. Business associations across the country will send memoranda to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal to protect the business community from the onslaught of e-commerce companies.

CAIT said that these e-commerce companies have gone to great lengths to turn a deaf ear to Goyal’s repeated statements on several occasions and have engaged in unethical and illegal activities by flouting the mandatory provisions of the FDI policy in letter and spirit. This fact was corroborated by the Delhi High Court in January 2021 in the Amazon v Future Retail case that Amazon engages in abusive practices and yesterday when the Karnataka High Court stated in its order that “it is provided that an order directing the inquiry be supported by “reasoning”, which the commission has fulfilled”. This observation by the Court substantiated that all is not well and therefore the investigation must continue. Both trade leaders praised CCI for making the case well and stood firm in its observations and actions.

CAIT said the misunderstanding among e-commerce companies that Indian laws are weak and can be manipulated back and forth according to convenience needs to be cleared up with immediate credible action.

Traders across the country have been held hostage by these companies and are slowly and gradually losing trust in the administrative system and to regain that trust, strict measures are needed to ensure that anyone, big or small, does not even think of violating law or policy.

CAIT said that despite these flagrant violations in the light of day, so far, relevant officials and departments have not taken any meaningful action to curb the bad practices of these e-commerce companies. It is requested that stern instructions be issued to relevant officials to take immediate action to maintain a level playing field, as you have repeatedly elaborated, business leaders said.

The CAIT said that the game of capital dumping by these so-called markets has drained the country’s entrepreneurial skills and human capital, which is a recognizable offence. Rendering any country’s human capital idle, displacing it from its businesses and encroaching on its livelihoods by these capital giants is certainly never the “Bharat” that Prime Minister Narendra Modi dreamed of. This policy kills the “Atmnirbhar Bharat” spirit of the Indian people.

“These companies are trying to establish themselves as the second edition of the East India Company to fulfill their aspirations and ulterior motives to control and dominate not just e-commerce, but the entire retail landscape. in India, which is run by more than 8 crore traders providing employment to nearly 40 crore people and generating an annual turnover of around Rs 115 crore lakh,” CAIT added.

The merchant body added that Amazon and Flipkart have claimed from time to time that they are the most law compliant bodies and if so then why are they afraid of any investigation into their business model? and their business practices and did their best to block the investigation ordered by the TCC.

“Let there be a thorough investigation by the ICC and these companies should emerge victorious from the various complaints that are made to them from time to time. The ICC’s investigation into their business model is in fact a credible opportunity for they to become a model for India’s trade and industry, claiming through them that they are the real engine of growth for small businesses and also to establish that they are the saviors. investigation process by Amazon & Flipkart certainly bolsters the allegations that these companies have fallen for the law violating the business model in every way,” he added.

Amazon and Flipkart claim that they are the true marketplace for e-commerce business in India and help small merchants grow their businesses. In fact, a significant number of smaller traders have grown under their business model as per their claims. Their claims send a message that these companies are in fact charitable organizations and they have taken pity on the vulnerable conditions of small businesses and therefore offer them greater opportunities to grow their businesses under the godly and sacred umbrella of these companies and they are the only alternative in India. for small traders to grow, CAIT said.

“However, we are of the opinion that such claims are absolutely unfounded and have no basis. If they are true to their version and claim, they should provide a list of only top 10 sellers on their portal during of the past 5 years. which will reveal the fact that names from the same set of sellers will exist for those 5 years as top sellers closely related to them in some way, thus consolidating sales in a few hands are accustomed to making lofty claims about helping and helping small and medium retailers while ruthlessly destroying the very fabric of our traditional Kirana and small traders,” the body said.

“India’s business community is self-reliant and does not need pity from any foreign entity. We are absolutely not orphan children as perceived by these companies and are fully competent to ensure our growth in the parameters of the policies set for the internal trade of India by the government and it is not a mistake but an accepted fact that whatever the revenue generated from the internal trade in India is the proven result of the hard work Indian merchants have put into their businesses and the level of CSR activities carried out by merchants in India is far greater than any corporate house including Amazon, Flipkart and others,” said the organism.

Traders across the country are in pain and anguish following a recent remark made by Amit Agarwal, Country Head, Amazon India, where he said that for India to be a global investment destination, it must affirm the validity of contracts and legal agreements.

“We have never come across a more paradoxical statement from a business leader, because if there is one group of companies that must respect and follow the law of the land, it is Amazon India. Mr. Aggarwal better not mock the Indian legal system that Amazon has recourse to in addition to the large-scale and still persistent violations of FEMA/FDI policy, lockdown guidelines and other laws and better put the absolute emphasis on compliance with the policy and the law set out in FDI government policy,” CAIT said.

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