The Shopper Safety Act 2019, brings ecommerce inside its ambit
Ecommerce is outlined as shopping for or promoting of products or companies together with digital merchandise over digital networks
Corporations providing companies resembling cab-hailing, on-line ticketing and video streaming are additionally thought-about ecommerce entities within the act
India’s newly ratified Shopper Safety Act (CPA) 2019, which got here into impact earlier this month, moreover bringing ecommerce below its ambit, can be understood to be making use of to an entire gamut of corporations which provide on-line companies, resembling ride-hailing companies, on-line ticketing and video streaming companies, amongst others.
It’s because the Shopper Safety (Ecommerce) Guidelines, 2020, notified by the Division of Shopper Affairs on July 23, outline ecommerce as “buying or selling of goods or services including digital products over digital or electronic networks.”
“The rules very clearly state that this is applicable to all forms of digital transactions involving the buying or selling of goods and services,” a senior authorities official informed Financial Instances. “It would be wrong to think that this is only applicable for marketplace and inventory models where there is a sale of physical goods.”
The applicability of the principles would imply that corporations resembling MakeMyTrip, OYO, and on-line ticketing companies supplied by airways resembling Indigo and Vistara, amongst others, would wish to determine an enough grievance redressal mechanism. The foundations mandate that etailers arrange a grievance redressal officer, acknowledge the receipt of a criticism inside 48 hours and resolve the criticism inside one month of the criticism being filed by the shopper.
As a part of the brand new tips, business-to-consumer (B2C) web corporations resembling MakeMyTrip, Ola, Uber, Swiggy, Zomato, BigBasket, UrbanClap and others, are additionally outlined as etailers or ecommerce entities.
Consultants Again New Regulation
The brand new CPA has been lauded by specialists for empowering the customers. The method of grievance redressal has additionally been eased considerably for the buyer. Whereas earlier, a shopper must file a criticism on the registered workplace of the vendor, with the approaching of the brand new Act, the buyer can now file a criticism on-line, with the buyer fee which has jurisdiction over his/her place of residence. Additional, plaintiffs can now attend hearings by way of video conferencing. The Act additionally mandates the establishing of a 35-member Central Shopper Safety Authority (CCPA) headed by the Union Minister of Shopper Affairs, to advertise, defend and implement the rights of customers.
Kaushalya Venkataraman, companion at Chandhiok & Mahajan Advocates and Solicitors, stated that the ecommerce guidelines would result in systemic adjustments to the style through which enterprise is performed by ecommerce entities.
“As the principal focus of the changes are consumer protection, the ecommerce rules aim at increasing disclosures by the ecommerce platforms, websites to ensure consumers make informed decisions and by prohibiting price manipulation and unfair trade practices by the ecommerce platforms/ websites. The ecommerce rules also bring within their ambit offshore websites shipping goods and providing services to Indian consumers and require them to have a place of business in India and to designate persons resident in India to remain accountable for compliance,” Chandhiok informed Inc42.