The Delhi High Court on Friday issued notice on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) seeking direction to the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology to take appropriate steps to ban, suspend, regulate the sale of products by a brand Shein through Amazon.in.
The PIL moved by Ananttika Singh sought direction to the Union of India to appoint a third party committee at the cost of Amazon.in to make audits on the flow of data of the Indian consumers to Shein.
The Bench of Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh on Friday while seeking a response from the Union of India and Respondent Amazon, refused to put any interim stay and slated the matter for August.
The petition filed through Advocates Preet Singh Oberoi and Amer Vaid also sought a court direction to Amazon to partially suspend all partnership with Shein till the time Amazon can assure the Government of India that no data is shared in any form with Shein to the satisfaction of the Ministry of Information.
Senior Advocate Vivek Raj Singh appearing for the petitioner submitted that through a notification dated June 29, 2020, the application and platform operated, owned, and controlled by the brand name Shein was temporarily banned in India by the Ministry.
Singh stated that the temporary ban was premised on the undisputed finding, that the data collected by Shein of its Indian customers was being used in a manner that was prejudicial to the interest and sovereignty of India.
He further argued that in January 2021 in pursuance of Section 69 A of the Information Technology Act, 2000 Act read with the Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking of Access of Information by Public) Rules 2009, the Ministry permanently banned the Shein mobile application/platform from operating in India. Therefore, it is an undisputed fact that the operation of the Shein brand and its products was banned in India.
However, Amazon.in on July 12, 2021, advertised about its Prime Sale scheduled to be held on its platform. It was categorically advertised by Amazon.in, that products of the Shein would be available on its website as part of the sale.
The Petitioner sought the court’s intervention in the matter stating in the event that Shein is not prohibited from selling its products via the “prima sale” on Amazon.in, it could severely impinge on the integrity and sovereignty of the nation, the plea said.
Shein, a Chinese clothing brand, was one of the applications banned by the Government of India along with the other Chinese apps amid border tensions between the two countries.
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