The writ petition filed by ecommerce platform Amazon India in the Karnataka High Court seeking a stay on the investigation ordered by the Competition Commission of India (CCI) came up for hearing on Wednesday.
The petition has made CCI, Delhi Vyapar Mahasangh and Flipkart Internet Services respondents in the case.
The court said that it will hear all parties before making a decision, scheduling the next hearing for Thursday. The court has not granted the interim stay order Amazon had appealed for.
Senior advocate Gopal Subramanium represented Amazon in the hearing, which went on for close to four hours, arguing that the CCI had not approached the company for clarification before launching an investigation. He also argued that the ecommerce platform does not have any shareholding or stakes in the largest seller on its platform Cloudtail, in which Infosys co-founder NR Narayana Murthy's family office holds a 76% stake. Subramanium added that the current order was an inference without factual backing.
“The year 2020 will see regulators examining business practices in the consumer internet space and it is not restricted to ecommerce alone,” Satish Meena, senior forecast analyst at Forrester Research, said.
The petition was filed by Amazon on Monday seeking a stay on the CCI investigation ordered against Amazon and Flipkart on January 13. The CCI had taken the measure based on a complaint filed by the traders body Delhi Vyapar Mahasangh, alleging malpractices by the ecommerce platforms such as deep discounting, predatory pricing and pricing control, as well as violation of Foreign Direct Investment guidelines.