WhatsApp payment faces another probe for violating India's antitrust laws

By Digit NewsDesk | Published on 16 May 2020
WhatsApp payment faces another probe for violating India's antitrust laws
HIGHLIGHTS

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) is reportedly reviewing a complaint against WhatsApp.

The complaint comes at a time when WhatsApp is aggressively looking for an official rollout of the service in India.

India's antitrust law was developed to protect consumers from monopolistic business practices by making it illegal for businesses to compete in unfair ways.

Advertisements

VIVO V19: HELPING YOU TAKE THE PERFECT SHOT FOR THOSE PERFECT MOMENTS

Let’s take a better look at what the new vivo V19 has to offer.

Click here to know more

Facebook-owned instant messaging app WhatsApp's plans to officially integrate its payment service into the app is under scrutiny once again. The Competition Commission of India (CCI) is reportedly reviewing a complaint against the social media giant that raises concerns regarding the violation of the country’s antitrust laws. 

The complaint was filed in mid-March alleging that WhatsApp was bundling its digital payment service within its messaging app, which allows it to abuse its massive user base to exploit India's growing digital payments market. While WhatsApp and CCI did not comment on the matter yet, two sources told Reuters that the complainant was a lawyer, who refused to disclose his identity. “The case is in initial stages .. senior members of CCI are reviewing it, but a final decision hasn’t been reached,” told one of the three sources to Reuters.

The complaint comes at a time when WhatsApp is aggressively looking for an official rollout of the service in India, whereas, it has been beta testing the service with 1 million users since 2018. WhatsApp’s payment service will allow users to do inter-bank fund transfers via UPI from within the messaging app. While in Google's case, the search giant released a standalone app for the service. 

India's antitrust law and WhatsApp

WhatsApp has been struggling to get regulatory clearance for a full-fledged rollout to its existing 400 million users in India. Country's antitrust watchdog is allegedly looking into the allegations. The CCI can order its investigations arm to conduct a detailed probe into the claims or discard the case if it finds no substantial argument to back it. 

India's antitrust law was developed to protect consumers from monopolistic business practices by making it illegal for businesses to compete in unfair ways. WhatsApp, which has its most extensive user base in India, definitely has an advantage over the existing famous players like Google Pay and Paytm.

The latest antitrust setback isn't the first hurdle restricting WhatsApp payment service in India. Last month an Indian legal think-tank also filed a case in Supreme Court against violation of data storage rules by WhatsApp. In response, WhatsApp told the court that it would comply with the necessary laws before launching the service, whereas the latest court order has asked Indian regulators to submit their views on the case.

logo
Digit NewsDesk

The guy who answered the question 'What are you doing?' with 'Nothing'.

Digit caters to the largest community of tech buyers, users and enthusiasts in India. The all new Digit in continues the legacy of Thinkdigit.com as one of the largest portals in India committed to technology users and buyers. Digit is also one of the most trusted names when it comes to technology reviews and buying advice and is home to the Digit Test Lab, India's most proficient center for testing and reviewing technology products.

We are about leadership-the 9.9 kind! Building a leading media company out of India.And,grooming new leaders for this promising industry.

DMCA.com Protection Status