Walmart-owned Flipkart has approached the Supreme Court to look for relief from an investigation initiated by the Competition Commission of India (CCI) after the Karnataka High Court division bench denied its petition.
Based on Piyush Goyal’s recent remarks, the Karnataka High Court had stated in its 156-page order that it couldn’t understand why Amazon and Flipkart were refusing to participate in the Competition Commission of India investigation adding that the antitrust body was just asking for “inquisitorial departmental proceedings”.
It also stated that if the companies were not involved in any violation, they should not feel shy in facing an inquiry. The detailed order was published on July 26 after the judgment was pronounced on July 23.
In order to contact the Supreme Court, Flipkart awaited the upload of the copy.
“We have a very robust compliance and governance process and remain in full compliance with Indian laws,” stated a Flipkart Group Spokesperson. Amazon is also expected to file an appeal soon.
A high court decision against one of India’s biggest e-commerce companies was the second such judgment by the court. A single-judge bench order that allowed the antitrust body to carry on its investigation against the two platforms under Section 3 of the Competition Act that pertains to anticompetitive agreements had been challenged by the two earlier.
In October 2019, the Delhi Vyapar Mahasangh (DVM), which represents small and medium businesses in the national capital, filed a complaint with CCI alleging that the two companies engaged in anti-competitive practices, predatory pricing, and preferential treatment of their sellers.
The complaints were filed under Sections 3 and 4 of the Competition Act. The CCI directed the director-general to conduct an investigation in January 2020.
Amazon challenged this order in the Karnataka High Court in February 2020. During the same month, the high court halted the CCI’s investigation.
On June 11, 2021, Justice PS Dinesh Kumar dismissed the writ petition after months of hearings.