Delhi HC seeks Centre’s stand on ‘Country of Origin’ tag : 02-07-2020

The Delhi High Court has issued notices to the Centre as well as a handful of e-commerce websites on a plea seeking directions to the online players to display the ‘country of origin’ of products sold on their platforms.

A division bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Hari Shankar issued notices to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry and online platforms including Amazon, Flipkart, Snapdeal, Ajio, Nykaa and Decathlon.

The petition, filed by one Ajay Shukla, comes at a time when India is looking to curb imports from China amid heightened border tensions between the two countries. The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology earlier this week also banned 59 Chinese apps over concerns of  data security and privacy.

The petition seeks the court’s intervention in asking the government to direct ecommerce platforms to comply with the Legal Metrology (Packaged Commodity) Rules, which were amended in 2017 to make display of the “name of the country of origin or manufacture or assembly” mandatory by e-commerce entities. “This has not been complied with for the last three years,” Shukla told ET.

ET had reported last week that the e-commerce firms, in a meeting with the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), had agreed to display the country of origin of goods sold on their platforms and had sought four to five months to comply with the rule.

While companies including Flipkart and Amazon were ready to highlight the required details on their websites and apps, they pointed out that updating existing listings would be an arduous task, and that the onus should be on individual sellers listing those products on their platform.

According to the petition, it had become essential for e-commerce websites to display the country of origin for all products sold through their platforms as there is a large number of Indian citizens that intend to comply with the government’s appeal to promote and buy Indian goods.

Source : PTi