1. Paytm boss Vijay Shekhar Sharma lashes out at Facebook, WhatsApp on Twitter

Paytm boss Vijay Shekhar Sharma lashes out at Facebook, WhatsApp on Twitter

Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma has lashed out social networking giant Facebook and its social messaging app WhatsApp. In a series of tweets, Sharma hit out at WhatsApp for introducing its payments feature in India.

By: | New Delhi | Updated: February 15, 2018 5:24 PM
vijay shekhar sharma, vijay shekhar sharma paytm, vijay shekhar sharma on facebook, vijay shekhar sharma on paytm, vijay shekhar sharma hits out at facebook, whatsapp payments, paytm news Vijay Shekhar Sharma has lashed out social networking giant Facebook and its social messaging app WhatsApp. (Source: Reuters)

Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma has lashed out social networking giant Facebook and its social messaging app WhatsApp. In a series of tweets, Sharma hit out at WhatsApp for introducing its payments feature in India. “India must welcome global tech companies,” Sharma, who has been vocal about the rise of international giants in India, tweeted on Wednesday. “It must not let them colonise our Internet. Their ambitions and intentions are clear in last few weeks,” he added.

WhatsApp had recently launched its payment feature in India and poses a major threat for Paytm which has dominated the Indian market. WhatsApp’s payment service, which works on top of the UPI infrastructure, has the most simplified user interface of any payment app in India, which is another problem for Paytm.

Sharma, while pointing the threat from WhatsApp said that these tactics are similar to the ways ‘Microsoft hurt open web standards’ decades ago. “After failing to win the war against India’s open internet with cheap tricks of Free Basics, Facebook is again at play,” Sharma posted on the micro-blogging website. “Killing beautiful open UPI system with its custom close garden implementation. I am surprised, champions of open India Stack, let it happen!” he said.

There is no official response from WhatsApp on this matter. But, Neeraj Arora, vice president of business development for Facebook’s WhatsApp has resigned from Paytm’s board of directors. Arora who has previously worked for Google had played an important role in increasing the reach of WhatsApp.

Sharma’s tweets haven’t gone well with some of the other competitors as well. “All incumbents complaining about Whatsapp getting unfair advantage in its UPI implementation to further its business interests – Those who live in glasshouses, ……. . There is clear record of private companies who got access first and exclusively when UPI was launched.1/n,” Bipin Preet Singh, Mobikwik CEO said in a tweet.

Meanwhile, Kunal Shah, founder and former CEO of e-payments company Freecharge used Patanjali as an example to hit out at Vijay Shekhar Sharma. “All companies threatened by Whatsapp payments are going to tag it as anti national and try to pull it down as it’s hard to win on merit against network effects of Whatsapp. This strategy worked for Patanjali and wonder if it will work for payment companies,” he wrote on Twitter.

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