Supreme Court issues notice on plea seeking to compel e-commerce companies to display country of origin of products
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Supreme Court issues notice on plea seeking to compel e-commerce companies to display country of origin of products

The plea sought this direction in a bid to further the movement to boycott China which had gained steam in India in the wake of the tension along Indo-China border in Ladakh.

Shruti Mahajan

The Supreme Court today issued notice on a plea seeking directions to the Government of India to formulate a law compelling e-commerce sites and business houses selling goods to declare the country of origin of products. (Divya Jyoti Singh v. Union of India).

The Bench of CJI SA Bobde with justices AS Bopanna, and V Ramasubramanian sought Centre's response on this plea filed by Advocate Divya Jyoti Singh who has urged that the country of origin for products should be easily visible to customers so that an informed decision can be made.

The plea sought this direction in a bid to further the movement to boycott China which had gained steam in India in the wake of the tension along Indo-China border in Ladakh. The petitioner says that revealing the country of origin for products will help in boycotting Chinese goods. The plea says,

"There is a wave flowing in the country for boycotting the Chinese products, by non-disclosure of the ‘Country of Origin’ on the web-portals, these giant business houses/ e-commerce portals are not only playing with the patriotic feelings of the Indians but also are proving fatal in the efforts of each and every citizen of India in boycotting the Chinese products and also are blocking the way in promoting the local manufacturers/brands as called for by our Prime Minister so that the country becomes self-reliant as is the need of the hour."

Alternatively, the petitioner has prayed for an amendment of Section 2 (9) of the Consumer Protection Act to add that the consumer’s rights shall also include the right of the consumer to know the ‘Country of Origin’ in the e-commerce portals.

Section 2(9) of the consumer Protection Act states that a consumer's rights include "the right to be informed about the quality, quantity, potency, purity, standard and price of goods, products or services, as the case may be, so as to protect the consumer against unfair trade practices."

Singh has argued that there is a large influx of "junk" which is made and imported from China and that "consumers are still kept in dark by not disclosing the Country of Origin."

In a recent move in a similar matter, the Centre informed the Delhi High Court that all e-commerce website are obligated to display country of manufacture of products under Rule 6(10) of the Legal Metrology (Packaged Commodities) Rules, 2011.

Read Order:

Divya Jyoti Singh vs UOI.pdf
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