Amazon and Walmart’s Flipkart have been issued with notices by an Indian government body asking why dangerous acids are available on their sites after a schoolgirl became the victim of an acid attack.
The Delhi Commission for Women, a local body that looks after women’s issues, said in the notice that it had learned the accused in the acid attack had bought the material from Walmart’s Flipkart.
In a similarly worded notice issued to both Amazon and Flipkart, the commission asked both companies to explain the reasons for the availability of acid and name the sellers who sold such products on their e-commerce website.
“The easy availability of acid on online platforms is a matter of grave concern and needs to be checked urgently,” the commission said in the notice.
Reuters could not immediately corroborate if the acid was available on the two e-commerce websites. Spokespersons for Flipkart and Amazon did not respond to a request for comment.
Local media reported on Thursday that a seventeen-year old schoolgirl was in hospital with serious burn injuries after three men attacked her with acid. The three men have been arrested by police in the Indian capital. The Delhi Police had also issued a notice to Flipkart after it found that the acid was procured from the e-commerce firm.
Meanwhile, Flipkart said in its statement, “We strongly condemn this unfortunate incident, and our thoughts and prayers are with the victim and her family. The Flipkart marketplace platform closely monitors and delists products that violate expected standards.”
“Strict action is taken against sellers who are found to be engaged in selling products that are illegal, unsafe, and prohibited. The concerned seller has been blacklisted, and we are extending all support to the concerned authorities in their investigation.”
DCW also asked the portals details of steps taken for removing restricted items, including acid from the online portal. The portals have been asked to furnish the information by December 20.