Government unveils draft e-com norms

  1. The Ministry of Consumer Affairs has introduced the draft e-commerce guidelines for consumer protection.
  2. The proposed rules are aimed at curbing the sale of counterfeit goods, streamlining returns and refunds and delineating the liabilities of sellers and online marketplaces.
  3. The rules provides that every e-commerce entity needs to publish the name and contact details of the grievance officer on their website along with the mechanism by which users can lodge their complaints.
  4. The rules mandates that e-commerce companies needs to ensure that the data collection,storage and usage comply with provisions of the Information Technology (Amendment) Act,2008.
  5. The rules also reiterates that e-commerce entities will not be allowed to influence prices of products sold on their websites directly or indirectly, which has already been a part of FDI rules for e-commerce.
  6. The guidelines also put the onus on marketplaces to do their own due diligence when customers complain about receiving counterfeit products, and they may need to take down such listings.
  7. The rules proposed to make it mandatory for firms to display terms of contract with the seller relating to return, refund, exchange, warranty ,delivery,mode of payments and grievance redressal mechanism to enable consumers to make informed decisions.