NEW DELHI - Indian Commerce Minister faced heat on social media on Saturday for his remarks that many national businesses had overlooked all major interest and that $106 billion Tata Group's objections to proposed policy changes for e-commerce had upset him.
An event arranged by the Confederation of Indian Industry on Thursday has Minister Piyush Goyal attacked Tata and more broadly said local businesses should not focus just on profits or think about bypassing local laws, according to media reports and a source who attended the event.
The comments caught public attention and ignited a debate on social media after The Hindu said on Saturday the government had asked the CII to block videos with Goyal's comments.
Two links to those videos shared by journalists on the speech of Goyal were now blocked and marked as private. The CII and Goyal’s office did not respond to a request for comment.
The kind of language used against industry captains calling their work against nation’s interest is shameful CII should ask an apology instead of helping him by pulling down the video, said Priyanka Chaturvedi, a lawmaker and opposition leader.
A spokeswoman of India's main opposition Congress Party, Goyal, said on Twitter Goyal'sGoyal's remarks were undignified.
Goyal reported on Tata after Reuters reported https: reut.rs 3 eLCfJo the conglomerate was among most vociferous in telling the government in July meeting that proposed e-commerce rules will have a major impact on its business https: reut.rs 3 dDlJdI and bar its joint venture partners like Starbucks from selling goods on Tata's shopping websites.
At the CII event, Goyal said Tata's objection to the rules had hurt him, saying he had conveyed that position to N. Chandrasekaran, the source who attended said.
Goyal has also repeatedly criticized https: reut.rs 3 qs 5 aXw Amazon and Walmart's Flipkart for allegedly bypassing foreign investment rules for e-commerce. This week, he also invoked the Quit India movement https: Reut.rs 3 AwPsho in parliament as he welcomed a court order which allowed an antitrust probe of the two companies to continue
The Confederation of all India Traders, however, welcomed Goyal's stand on Saturday saying it was highly unfortunate that Tata was opposing the government's e-commerce rules.
The 153-year-old Tata Group has big e-commerce plans and is planning launch of an app that will integrate several of its top brands, but the proposed policy changes have scared it, Reuters has reported https: reut.rs 3 eLCfJo.