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Proposed Amendments to the Consumer Protection (E-commerce) Rules, 2020

What are the new regulations?

  • The Centre put out proposals to tighten e-com regulations for consumer protection.
  • To protect the interests of consumers, mis-selling has been prohibited i.e selling goods and services entities selling goods or services by deliberate misrepresentation of information by such entities about such goods or services.
  • E-com firms must appoint resident officers to address grievances and monitor rule-compliance, and then be ready to share information sought by authorities within 72 hours.
  • For the sake of “free and fair competition”, they must label all wares on their websites by country-of-origin, offer local alternatives, keep search results unbiased, not sell anything to anyone registered as a ‘seller’ with them, not conduct deep-discount flash sales of cherry-picked products.
  • Restriction on aiding associated enterprises with any helpful data gleaned by their algorithms.
  • As another measure to assure small enterprises an even field, they must also ensure that their logistical systems support all sellers in the same category equally.
  • As it happens, this attempt to straitjacket e-com platforms coincides with an antitrust probe of ‘unfair practices’ ascribed to Amazon and Flipkart.
  • Putting in place a framework for registration of every e-commerce entity with the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) for allotment of registration number. Registration of e-commerce entities would help create a database of genuine e-commerce entities
Tags: Current Affairs, Economy

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