The Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA) has imposed a penalty of Rs. 1 lakh on e-commerce major Amazon for selling pressure cookers that did not meet quality standards.
The CCPA also directed Amazon to notify the consumers of all these 2,265 pressure cookers sold through its platform, recall the products and reimburse the prices to buyers, the Department of Consumer Affairs said in a statement.
The authority, headed by Chief Commissioner Nidhi Khare, recently passed an order against Amazon for allowing sale of domestic pressure cookers, in violation of mandatory standards, on its e-commerce platform.
The CCPA had initiated suo-moto action against e-commerce platforms for sale of domestic pressure cookers in violation of compulsory standards.
The authority had issued notices to major e-commerce platforms, including Amazon, Flipkart, Paytm Mall, ShopClues and Snapdeal as well as the sellers registered on these platforms.
"After examination of the response submitted by the company, it was observed that total 2,265 pressure cookers not conforming to mandatory standards were sold through Amazon after notification of the QCO (Quality Control Order). The total fee earned by the Amazon on sale of such pressure cookers through its platform was Rs.6,14,825.41," the order said.
Amazon admitted that it earned 'sales commission' fee for the pressure cookers sold on its platform.
The CCPA observed that when Amazon earns commercially from each sale of the product listed on its e-commerce platform, it can not disassociate itself in case of issues arising from the sale of these items.
In the order, CCPA has asked Amazon to notify all consumers of the 2,265 pressure cookers, recall the products and reimburse the amount to the buyers.
Amazon has been asked to submit a compliance report within 45 days.
"The company was also directed to pay a penalty of Rs 1,00,000 for allowing sale of pressure cookers in violation to the QCO on its platform and violating rights of consumers." The CCPA had passed a similar order of penalty and recall of defective pressure cookers against Paytm Mall, which has complied with the directions and deposited the penalty of Rs 1 lakh.
The authority is continuously monitoring the consumer protection landscape in the country.
Recently, the CCPA issued an advisory to all e-commerce platforms with regard to sale of Ayurvedic, Siddha and Unani drugs.
It also recently issued Guidelines for Prevention of Misleading Advertisements and Endorsements for Misleading Advertisements.
The guidelines include conditions for valid and non-misleading advertisements, due diligence required for endorsement of advertisements and considerations for advertisements targeted at children.
The CCPA has also issued Safety Notices under Section 18(2)(j) of the Consumer Protection Act, 2019 to alert and caution consumers against buying goods which do not hold valid ISI mark and violate compulsory BIS standards.
While the first safety notice was issued with regard to helmets, pressure cookers and cooking gas cylinders, the second notice was issued with regard to household goods including electric immersion water heaters, sewing machines, microwave ovens, domestic gas stoves with LPG, among others.