BHOPAL: With slogans of ‘Amazon Quit India’ and ‘Flipkart Go Back, retailers across the country held a day-long protest on November 20 on the call of Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT). Protests were staged in some districts of the state, too. The traders alleged that huge discounts being offered by the e-commerce giants are ruining their businesses.
Local traders told Free Press that people increasingly switching to e-commerce sites was hitting their business by up to 60%. They even demanded that the government should shut down these sites.
Consumers, however, say that though low prices are the major attraction of e-commerce companies, the variety they offer and their replacement and refund policy are also the reasons why they prefer buying things online.
They (e-commerce companies) are definitely damaging us. Only time will tell what this change in consumer preferences would lead to. As for us, only the government can solve our problem. Government knows what it needs to be done. It can introduce differential taxation and ensure that these companies are not allowed to vend poor quality stuff and they are barred from selling anything at a price lower than its cost.
- Shyam Bansal, director, Mangalam Corporation India Private Limited
Traders are suffering. The only solution is to close down the e-commerce sites. And only the government can do it. People prefer them because of the convenience. But these sites are misleading and cheating the people. They first inflate the prices and then offer discounts. Also, they are selling fake and inferior quality goods.
- Shyam Babu Agarwal, President, Rajdhani Vastra Vyavsayi Sangh
Traders across the board are losing business up to 60% due to e-commerce sites. We are planning to protest against them. Only the BJP can do something to help us traders as it is in power at the Centre. The only way out is to shut down these companies.
- Satish Gangrade, President, New Market Vyapari Sangh
The best thing about buying stuff online is that we can easily return any thing which we have bought and get refund. Traders only exchange goods. There are other advantages too. The prices are lower and the choice is wider. The very fact that they offer refund and replacement shows that they do not want to cheat the customers.
- Priyanka Tripathi, software engineer
Price is an issue and so is variety. I can see 10,000 products online but can I do so in any store – no matter how big it is. Cash back offer is another attraction. Costlier items are available on zero interest EMI. Also, many products, especially mobile sets, are launched only online. The companies do everything to keep consumers satisfied.
- Ritesh Rangare, founder, Startup Space Station