The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked the government to consider the Retailers’ Association of India’s (RAI) plea seeking parity in the foreign direct investment (FDI) policy vis-a-vis e-commerce players.
Justice Rajiv Shakdher while refusing to give any direction to the government asked the commerce ministry to consider RAI’s petition and directed the former to “deliberate upon” the issue and take a decision expeditiously within four months. Without going into the merits of the case, the judge also gave liberty to the RAI to approach the court if required.
Seeking a “level playing field” between “retailers in the physical world” and “retailers in the cyberspace” (internet world), RAI told the court its members are entitled to such level playing field with an e-commerce player having a market place model, foreign website allowing sales from one Indian to another or foreign website allowing sales through imports.
Major e-commerce players like Flipkart, Snapdeal and Amazon.in have made good inroads into the country’s retailing business by offering huge discounts, which impacted sales of brick-and-mortar retailers.