Maruti Suzuki India Limited, the biggest car manufacturer in India was recently fined Rs. 200 crores for practising some unfair dealer discount policy. It is pretty surprising to see such a big name doing so even when the company’s sales numbers are almost 3 times as of its best competitors, according to the Competition Commission of India (CCI) the company was fined for anti-competitive practices forcing the dealers to give discounts on the cars, for which the company is liable to pay the fine within 60 days of the notice.
The CCI began its investigation back in July of 2019 when the company was imposed with allegations of forcing their dealers in limiting the discounts and suppressing the competition which would have benefited the customers getting lower-priced cars if the dealers were left free to operate. CCI also claimed that it has confirmed such practice with various dealers and that the body responsible for the Discount control policy was Maruti itself.
In regards to the above issue, CCI has asked the company to “cease and desist” meaning to stop such practice in the future in accordance with the law and to pay the fine of Rs. 200 crores in the next 60 days.
In response to this notice, Maruti officials said to be looking into the details of the notice and proper action will be taken according to the law. However earlier the company said that there was no such thing as a discount control policy and the dealers were free to offer any discounts, they felt fit for the car they sold.
In our view, any such practice which may harm the consumers in any way possible should be heavily fined and should be advised not to indulge in any such practice from now on.
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