The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) is highly dejected with the minimum amount penalty of merely Rs 25,000 levied on Amazon India by the Ministry of Consumer Affairs for not providing the mandatory details of 'Country of Origin' of the products displayed on its platform.
CAIT has said that the fundamental reason for levying the fine is to make offenders realise their fault for not committing the same offence any more.
However, the paltry monetary penalty has no significance at all and it is demanded that a seven-day ban on Amazon and other big e-commerce companies who are continuously offending the law and policies, should be imposed on them. "Let there be an exemplary punishment," said CAIT.
CAIT National President B.C. Bhartia and Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal in a joint statement issued here on Friday said that levying such a small amount on a foreign e-commerce giant for violating Indian Law is nothing but a mockery of our judicial and administrative system.
"The punishment should be equal to the damage caused by them on our economy and it should have reflected a clear message to the foreign ecommerce players that anyone disobeying the law of the land," they said.
Bhartia and Khandelwal said that in the wake of the magnitude of e-commerce business in India and taking the call of Prime Minister Narendra Modi "vocal for local" and "Atmanirbhar Bharat", the description of the Country of Origin is now mandatory and for disobeying this law for the first time, the relevant ecommerce portal should be banned for seven days, for second offence, it should be banned for 15 days and for third offence, the portal should be banned till the time, it complies fully with the law.
"The government is custodian of the laws framed by it and therefore, it is the duty of the government to maintain sanctity and strict implementation of the law both in letter and spirit," they added.
Bhartia and Khandelwal said that a fine or penalty should always be exemplary and be in proportion to the offence committed. Having this yardstick as the barometer, the fine of a token amount of Rs 25,000 is more like compromising with the law.
"Amazon can go on disobeying the law as for them the fine amount is very small. They further added that there is some vested interest behind the continuous violation of the Indian law by these ecommerce companies and, hence the fine imposed needs to be steep.
"Law should be equal for everybody and other ecommerce players (Flipkart, Myntra) should also face the heat for flouting rules. We are unable to understand why they were not fined. Such an indecisive attitude of the authorities towards the foreign e-commerce players is quite unreasonable," they added.