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CAIT files a writ petition against Flipkart

The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) has filed a writ petition in the Delhi high court to investigate the business model of online retailer Flipkart.

, ET Bureau|
Aug 30, 2018, 03.48 PM IST
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BENGALURU: The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) has filed a writ petition in the Delhi high court to investigate the business model of online retailer Flipkart. The trade body which represents 70 million small businesses, had also filed a complaint against the ‘malpractices’ of Flipkart with the enforcement directorate (ED) a few months ago, but to no avail.

“Flipkart’s malpractices such as predatory pricing, discounting and inventory management cause a problem to other smaller sellers on the platform,” said Praveen Khandelwal, CAIT secretary general. “We have filed a petition asking the court to intervene and direct the ED to start an investigation into the allegations we have revealed.”

This comes just a few days after the trade body petitioned the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) against the approval given for the Walmart-Flipkart deal by the Competition Commission of India.

The retail and trader groups believe that Flipkart has been indulging in predatory pricing and deep discounting for a while and it will only get worse now that the Walmart-Flipkart deal has been sealed.

About 10 lakh traders had protested in July against the Walmart-Flipkart deal. The CAIT also filed a petition during the end of May with the antitrust regulator, objecting to the Walmart-Flipkart deal, citing the reason that such a merger would lead to predatory pricing, deep discounts, among others.

Prior to this, the All India Online Vendors Association (AIOVA), which represents over 3,000 online sellers, filed a petition with the CCI against Flipkart for giving ‘preferential treatment’ to a few seller entities and thus enabling steep discounts on its platform.

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