India rejects bids by Amazon & Flipkart to quash antitrust probe
An Indian court has turned down appeals by Amazon and Walmart-owned Flipkart to call off an antitrust investigation into their business practices in the country.
“By no stretch of the imagination can an inquiry be quashed at this stage. …The appeals are devoid of merit, and deserve to be dismissed,” the High Court in the southern Karnataka state said on Friday, adding that it saw the appeals as mere attempts to stall the court’s decision.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) launched an official inquiry last year into the practices of both US firms, following allegations from brick-and-mortar retailers that they promoted only certain sellers on their platforms and staved off competition.
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The probe was put on hold after both companies challenged it, arguing that the regulator lacked evidence, but the court reopened it last month.
The two firms may still appeal the decision in India’s Supreme Court, Reuters reported, citing insiders.
Flipkart said in a statement that it would review the court’s order, maintaining that all its practices were in accord with Indian laws.
Amazon did not immediately respond to a Reuters’ request for comment. It is currently facing another CCI probe for allegedly concealing facts and making false submissions when it wanted the regulator to sanction a 2019 deal with an Indian company.
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