The government notified the new e-commerce rules under the Consumer Protection Act, 2019, Friday. The Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distributions notified the Consumer Protection (E-Commerce) Rules, 2020, to cover all goods sold online through the marketplace or inventory-led models.
The new norms empower the central government to act against unfair trade practices in e-commerce, direct selling. They require e-tailers to facilitate easy returns, address customer grievances and prevent discriminating against merchants on their platforms. The new norms are part of India’s new consumer protection law – Consumer Protection Act, 2019 which came into force Monday.
Consumer Protection Act, 2019 aims to protect the rights of consumers by establishing authorities for timely and effective administration and settlement of consumers’ dispute.
The e-commerce norms under the CPA, 2019 shall apply to all e-commerce retailers operating in India, whether they are registered in Indian or abroad. Union Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution Ram Vilas Paswan Monday said penal action will be taken against e-commerce entities which do not adhere to the Consumer Protection (E-Commerce) Rules, 2020.
The norms cover all models of e-commerce, including marketplace and inventory models of e-commerce; all e-commerce retail, including multi-channel single-brand retailers and single-brand retailers in single or multiple formats.
Key new e-commerce rules
The notification describes “e-commerce entity” as any person who owns, operates or manages digital or electronic facility or platform for electronic commerce, but does not include a seller offering his goods or services for sale on a marketplace e-commerce entity.
The rules task these e-commerce entities to set up a robust complaint redressal mechanism which ensures that customer complaints are addressed under 48 hours and resolution is provided within one month.
The entity is also required to mention the name and details of any importer from whom it has purchased such goods or services, or who may be a seller on its platform. impose cancellation charges on consumers
No cancellation charges shall be imposed after confirming purchase unless similar charges are also borne by the e-commerce entity if they cancel the purchase order unilaterally for any reason, the rules state.
The new rules also forbid manipulation of good and services as to gain unreasonable profit by imposing on consumers any unjustified price having regard to the prevailing market conditions.-Times Now News