The e-commerce business has grown rapidly over the recent years in India. Due to this there is an increase in fraudulent activities also grown up that causes inconvenience to people. The government has therefore rectified the policies again to overcome it but this time the Centre is more serious than ever. The Indian government has set up a new steering committee which will look after the progress and development of a government based e-commerce platform ‘Desi Amazon’. It can be considered to be equivalent to Amazon but with strict laws which will aim to minimize malpractices.
The new committee has been set up by the Commerce Ministry and will give supervision on the policy for the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC), it is an e-commerce platform which the government is backing for the development. The ONDC will cater as the foundation for setting up the final storefront which will be something like Flipkart and Amazon. Under the Ministry of Commerce, the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) issued the order on November 24 and a copy of which was seen by Medianama.
Members of the Committee:
According to the publication, this committee will have eleven members including General Secretary of Confederation of All India Traders – Praveen Khandelwal. He has confirmed his appointment among three other members. According to the order, the committee members will be as below:
– Joint Secretary, DPIIT as the Chairman of the committee
– Representatives from the Retailers Association of India
– Representative from Government e-Market (GeM)
– Representative from the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY)
– Representative from the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises
– Representative from the NITI Aayog
– Adil Zainulbhai, Chairman, Quality Council of India
– Dilip Asbe, chief executive officer, National Payments Corporation of India
– Suresh Seth, CEO, NSDL
– Arvind Gupta, founder of MyGov
– Praveen Khandelwal, secretary-general, Confederation of All India Traders
As per the report of Medianama, the order states that “The steering committee will initially build consensus throughout the organisation and then once the project gets underway, will ensure that the project continues to meet the set vision, goals, and objectives.”
Reason behind the launch of Government’s own e-commerce platform:
The simplest reason behind is to redevelop the e-commerce ecosystem of the country which has been hampered by vengeful activities. It has affected the growth of platforms and discouragement of buyers. This is one of the important reasons for the Government to create a standalone infrastructure in order to restart the e-commerce business in India from a new point.
Apart from this, there are several other reasons behind this decision of the Government to create the ‘Desi Amazon’. The brick and mortar stores have unanimously agreed for the unfair practices across the country by e-commerce platforms to feed their customers. This is something which retailers cannot counter practically.
The traders across India have raised their voice due to pain faced by them because of the uneven level of field in the market for the selling of the goods. These methods consist of predatory pricing, deep discounts and exclusive sales which are the outcome of a partnership with the brand. The logistics and inventory practices of online e-commerce brands are also under scanning.
In order to maintain a level field, the government is planning to find a solution for these problems. The preference for the online platforms for shopping will depend on customers but only when they are exposed to all the options available in the market.
How good Desi Amazon will be?
As of now, we are not aware about what the government has planned for this e-commerce platform. But going by the set of rules which are sought by the government for this e-commerce company, there will be a huge representation of traders who are operational across India. This is similar to which Amazon offers under various benefits of Amazon’s Seller services but on a profit sharing basis. But, this profit sharing may not be there on the Government’s e-commerce platform.