On Amazon, snacks sold as Ram temple ‘prasad’; govt panel issues notice | Latest News India - Hindustan Times

On Amazon, snacks sold as Ram temple ‘prasad’; govt panel issues notice

Jan 20, 2024 10:00 AM IST

Authorities examined samples of such brands and found the label ‘prasad’ (consecrated offering to the deity) from the Ram temple, Ayodhya, to be “misleading”

The Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA) on Friday issued a notice to e-commerce platform Amazon Seller Services Private Ltd following a complaint by a traders’ body that several food companies were selling “Shri Ram Mandir Ayodhya Prasad” online, which constituted fraud.

 (Representative Photo)
(Representative Photo)

Authorities examined samples of such brands, selling snacks such as ladoo, and found the label ‘prasad’ (consecrated offering to the deity) from the Ram temple, Ayodhya, to be “misleading”.

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An official statement said such foods violated provisions of the Consumer Protection Act 2019, including those against misleading claims and unfair trade practices. The CCPA has sought a response from the e-commerce giant within a week.

Also Read: SC judges who gave Ayodhya verdict invited to Ram Lalla pran-pratishtha ceremony

The CCPA’s action has come amid Ayodhya’s preparations for the January 22 inauguration ceremony of the Ram temple by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The temple town is expected to get an economic boost as it gears up for millions of devotees who will visit it.

While the CCPA has targeted four food products, three contain the words ‘Shri Ram Mandir Ayodhya Prasad’, while one of the snack brands did not use these wordings but advertises its ‘ladoos’ as a ‘memorable offering that can be taken to the deity in Ayodhya’. Even that is potentially liable for action, a senior official said.

CCPA chief commissioner and Union secretary of consumer affairs Rohit Kumar Singh said, “You cannot mislead in the headings. Most people don’t read the fine print.”

The CCPA’s action came after a written complaint by the Confederation of All India Traders’ Praveen Khandelwal to Union consumers affairs minister Piyush Goyal regarding “Amazon’s Unscrupulous Trade Practices in the name of Lord Ram”, which HT has reviewed. Amazon’s reaction was not available till the time of filing this report.

CCPA’s Singh said no penalties had been slapped on Amazon, but it had been only been called to explain the products.

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    Zia Haq reports on public policy, economy and agriculture. Particularly interested in development economics and growth theories.

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