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Indian retailers demand Amazon probe
A group representing millions of India’s brick-and-mortar retailers has demanded the Indian government launch an investigation into Amazon, following a report on the e-commerce giant’s alleged unethical practices in the country.
Amazon India’s private-brands team is accused of using internal data to identify products to copy, with search results then manipulated to ensure the Amazon versions appear at or near the top of the search results. According to Reuters, internal documents show that this way of operating was a formal strategy in India, reviewed by at least two senior executives. “We believe these claims are factually incorrect and unsubstantiated,” Amazon said in a statement.
Now the Confederation of All India Traders, which claims to represent 80 million retail stores, and the Alliance of Digital India Foundation, a non-profit representing some of the country’s biggest startups, have urged the government to take action.
Why it matters
The Alliance referred to “Amazon’s predatory playbook of copying, rigging and killing Indian brands” – an emotive description that may strike a chord with many Indian consumers. Already there have been calls to boycott the platform.