Amazon and Flipkart to face investigations for alleged antitrust policy violations.

The regulatory agencies investigate Amazon and Flipkart in the most recent phase in Big Tech’s antitrust dispute in India. As per a recent Reuters report, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) would soon demand information on anti-competitive conduct.

Last year, the competition commission investigated allegations that Amazon and Flipkart suppressed competition by prioritizing selected sellers on their e-commerce platform. The commission claimed that Amazon and Flipkart engaged in four antitrust practices, prioritizing some sellers with exclusive launches and selective offers and discounts.

Amazon and Flipkart obtain a stay order from the Karnataka High court after a month of the allegation. However, last week, a court allowed the investigation to resume, dismissing e-commerce companies’ pleas.

P. S Dinesh Kumar, High Court Justice at Karnataka, stated that the court would not permit the companies relief applications. In his order of 51 pages, he noted that it would be unwise to prejudge the issues at this stage and abandon the investigation.

According to Abir Roy, a lawyer for Delhi Vyapar Mahasangh, the ruling cleared the way for the original investigation, which was stopped by the court’s stay order in February last year. The companies could once again appeal the ruling of the High Court.

The CCI has fastened all cases involving large tech companies, including through the deployment of additional officers in some situations and the setting of tighter internal deadlines, a person related to the matter said.

As per some other sources, cases involving digital firms are prioritized by the CCI, as they can significantly impact the Indian economy and startups.

“The CCI plans to move faster on these cases in line with other antitrust regulators globally that are investigating digital markets like e-commerce and online search, which are dynamic and evolving fast,” said an Indian antitrust lawyer representing tech companies.
Along with Amazon and Flipkart, the antitrust agencies are also investigating allegations that Google misused its dominating position in the Android TV OS, which drives many of the finest Smart TVs.

Recently, CCI ordered a probe into WhatsApp‘s privacy policy change, alleging that it violated antitrust laws in India. The news came soon after the proposed rule targeting Amazon, Google, Apple, Facebook, and other internet giants were introduced in the US by its administration. The bill focuses on limiting these company’s influence and make them accountable for anti-competitive activity.

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