The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) has announced a three-month nation-wide agitation from January 1, 2023 till March 31, 2023, seeking streamlining of e-commerce and simplification as well as rationalisation of GST structure in the country.
"It is a matter of great regret that even after spending more than three years, the Central Government has not been able to bring e-commerce policy and e-commerce rules under Consumer Protection Act whereas the foreign e-commerce companies are bent upon in violating the law and the FDI policy quite openly under the nose of the government and no action has been taken so far," a statement issued by CAIT said.
It said that "not only the Central Government but even the state governments are bigger culprit since trade and commerce is a state subject and even after suffering huge losses of GST revenue at the hands of foreign e-commerce companies, the state governments have become silent spectator and enjoying a sort of honeymoon with these companies by entering into different kinds of MOUs."
CAIT National President B.C. Bhartia and Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal said the business community of the country is disappointed that there is no policy or rule on e-commerce trade.
CAIT announced that from January 1 to January 7, the trade associations all over the country will undertake a 'national e-mail' campaign under which bulk e-mails will be sent to both Union and state governments and all political parties, seeking their attention towards the problems being faced by traders due to a "highly vitiated e-commerce created by foreign e-commerce companies and much complex GST taxation system."
Traders across the country will observe January 17 as 'Liberate Trade from E-commerce Day' and trade associations will hold a dharna all over the country urging Central and state governments to accept and implement the traders charter of CAIT.
"The traders across the country will observe a day-long hunger on January 20, 2023 at more than 1,000 places," the statement said.
In February, trade associations of all states will take out rallies in their respective cities and will submit memorandums to respective chief ministers and finance ministers.
In March, state level traders conferences will be held in all states and a three-day national traders' conference will be held in the first week of April 2023 in New Delhi.
CAIT traders charter includes immediate rollout of a robust e-commerce policy, formation of a regulatory authority for e-commerce, immediate release of e-commerce rules under Consumer Protection Act, issuance of a new Press Note in place of Press Note 2 of 2018 of FDI Retail Policy, simplification and rationalisation of GST taxation system and rolling out of a national retail trade policy.