After receiving complaints from victimized local traders, the Indian Consumer Affairs Ministry has proposed a new set of rules to limit e-commerce platforms in various means.
These include blocking platforms from listing their own/related sellers on websites and banning flash sales altogether. Further, it mentions appointing relevant officers for handling grievances and law compliances.
Another Stroke to Amazon and Flipkart
Popular e-commerce platforms in India like Amazon and Walmart-owned Flipkart are constantly under the radar for manipulative trade practices. These companies are frequently blamed by local petty traders, who accuse them of exploiting with unreasonable sales.
Based on this, the Indian government has taken a big decision in 2018, which led Amazon and Flipkart to delist thousands of products from their platforms. India’s Ministry of Consumer Affairs proposes another similar set of rules on Monday evening.
These come after repeated complaints from the Confederation of All India Traders, a coalition of Indian traders with tens of millions of brick-and-mortar retailers, forcing the government to ban Amazon from India for its exploitation practices.
According to these proposed rules, the Indian government wants e-commerce platforms to ban flash sales from being conducted. It saw dummy sellers with no inventory or fulfillment capacity are hosting flash sales and reordering from actual sellers to fulfill the order.
Another rule states that respective e-commerce platforms should not let their partner or associated retailers sell goods directly to the customers via their online marketplaces. This is to ensure no exploitation is done against the rival independent retailers.
At last, the proposed rules ask e-commerce platforms to appoint a nodal contact person for 24×7 coordination with law enforcement agencies, a chief compliance officer, and a grievance officer to address the consumers’ grievances on the respective e-commerce platform.