Cait ups ante, rejects govt proposal

Deccan Chronicle.  | Sangeetha G

Business, In Other News

Cait has planned a nation-wide movement against the e-commerce companies.

Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal

Chennai: Small traders’ body has rejected government’s proposal to bring about a truce between them and e-commerce companies.

Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal had recently met the e-commerce companies and had asked them to engage with small traders and make them part of their growth story.

The Confederation of All India Traders (Cait) on Friday rejected this idea and said that there is no question of joining hands with any business entity who is not following the policy of the government and law of the land.

“If the reports are correct, then it is most surprising that instead of directing such e-commerce companies to fall in line with the policy, the government is encouraging them to continue with their existing business model,” Cait said in a release.

“So far we have not received any such communication from the government nor have we held any talks with any e-commerce entity on joining hands. It is a complicated matter as the offline business has suffered business loss of about 50 per cent in recent Diwali festive season due to e-commerce players who are indulging in predatory pricing, deep discounting, loss funding, controlling inventory, preferential treatment, influencing of prices which are in violation of the FDI policy. As per an estimate, the Diwali festival sale of small traders every year is about Rs. 6 lakh crore and this year they could generate sales of about Rs.3 lakh crore only,” Cait Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal said.

Cait has planned a nation-wide movement against the e-commerce companies. It has also convened an emergency meeting of its National Governing Council on November 10 at New Delhi to take stock of the situation and finalise the strategy of the movement scheduled to be launched from November 13.

Cait has also invited leaders of logistics bodies, small industries, hawkers, farmers, consumers, self- employed groups and women entrepreneurs for the agitation.

Meanwhile, commenting on the minister’s suggestion to work with small traders, Amazon said it was already doing so. “Amazon works closely with over 5.5 lakh sellers,” its spokesperson said.