Walmart’s Flipkart has filed a legal challenge against an antitrust investigation ordered against the company in India, a court filing seen by Reuters showed, following a similar petition by its rival Amazon.com. In January, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) ordered to probe into alleged violation of competition law and also certain discounting practices by the two e-commerce giants but last week state court puts the investigation on hold following a challenge by Amazon. Flipkart has the legal filing which was aimed at the signalling the company is aggrieved by the CCI’s probe order, sources said. Flipkart argues the CCI ordered its probe without initial evidence that the company’s practices were harming competition, this not public in its February 18 court filing in the southern Bengaluru city. Both biggest online shopping companies Amazon and Flipkart have faced criticism from Indian retailers which accuse them of violating local laws racking up billions of dollars of losses to fund deep discounts and discriminating against small sellers. However, allegation denies by the companies. The antitrust probe was ordered after a New Delhi-based trader group complained that the e-commerce giants were promoting select sellers and in turn hurting business for other smaller players.
Flipkart in its filing said the CCI had ‘failed in its duty’ to close the frivolous complaint and an investigation would harm the company’s reputation, lead to significant managerial time loss and legal costs.