Banks are discriminating against small-time shops and traders by providing up to ten percent cashback and other incentives to those purchasing goods through the online portals of e-commerce companies using the bank cards.
Traders' body CAIT today wrote to finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman seeking "strong action" against unethical practices of banks in collusion with e-commerce firms such as Amazon and Flipkart in a violation of Fair Practices Code introduced by RBI.
In the letter, National secretary general Praveen Khandelwal banks are discriminating against small-time shops and traders by providing up to ten percent cashback and other incentives to those purchasing goods through the online portals of e-commerce companies using the bank cards. However, the letter said, these banks, including SBI, Axis Bank and ICICI Bank, don’t provide the same benefit to shoppers who use online mode of payment while buying directly from traders.
This, according to the complaint, is hindering the smooth functioning of small scale shops thus breaching the ‘right to trade’ guaranteed in the constitution to every Indian in addition to being a violation of Competition Act, 2002.
Earlier, CAIT had written to the prime minister asking for the setting up of an empowered regulatory authority to regulate and monitor the e-commerce business in India. In the letter to the Prime Minister, the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) claimed that "big e-commerce companies having deep pockets are leaving no stone unturned in monopolising the e-commerce business and retail trade of India with their malpractices and violating FDI policy of the government and relevant laws and rules".
The traders' body claimed that various government authorities have failed to protect the sanctity of the policy and law of the government and also requested that an e-commerce policy should be announced immediately with an explicit provision of empowered regulatory authority.
-with agency inputs
First Published: IST