In October, online retailers Amazon and Flipkart had been issued notices by the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) for allegedly selling adulterated cosmetics and were warned of penal actions in case of failing to respond. Following the meeting with DCGI officials on November 1, the e-commerce giants have now committed to prevent sales of ‘unregulated’ and ‘fake’ cosmetics. Earlier in October, drug inspectors conducted raids at various locations across the country during which they found that cosmetics without valid manufacturing license and having ingredients imported without necessary registration certificates were being sold on the e-commerce platforms. Amazon, Flipkart Didn't Break Regulations Through Their Selection of Merchants, Brands: CCI.
As reported in Live Mint, products such as stem-cell based cosmetics, serums, skin whitening creams, glutathione injections and hyaluronic acid filler injections were among illegally imported products that were being sold. Several cosmetics contained ingredients that are not permitted for use on humans, said officials concerned with the investigation. S. Eswara Reddy, DCGI, said, “They have been told to start correcting their system. They are going to delete all such products from their sites and are also going to have different agreements with sellers to prevent sale of fake cosmetics.” Amazon US Creates Empty Packages With Fake Labels to Prevent Employee Theft.
The drug regulator told senior executives from Amazon and Flipkart to stop such sales or face strict action including a formal police complaint. Amazon India spokesperson told PTI, “Amazon.in is a third-party marketplace which enables sellers to list their products for sale to Indian customers. Sellers on Amazon.in own their respective products and are responsible for product compliances….The company has a high bar of customer experience and does take strict action against sellers who are selling illegal or fake products as and when such incidents are reported to us.”
Under the Drug and Cosmetics Act, it is mandatory to get a registration certificate for import of cosmetics into India. Besides, cosmetics need to conform to the standards laid down by the BIS (Bureau of Indian Standards) and cannot have any ingredient mentioned in its negative list. A similar notice was also issued to the Indiamart, Reddy said. Flipkart and Indiamart have not provided any comments.