Sushma Swaraj gets things done and how. Recently, someone tweeted to Swaraj about India-themed doormat being sold at Amazon’s Canadian website. The external affairs minister retweeted it immediately and warned Amazon. “Amazon must tender unconditional apology. They must withdraw all products insulting our national flag immediately. If this is not done forthwith, we will not grant Indian Visa to any Amazon official. We will also rescind the Visas issued earlier.”
The e-commerce website was forced to pay close attention to the notice instantly. The same night Amazon stopped selling the doormats that were being offered by two vendors.
Soon after Amit Agarwal, Vice-President and Country Manager, Amazon India, wrote a letter to Sushma Swaraj apologising for the apparent desecration of the Indian flag which is a punishable offence in the country. He says, “I am writing in connection with the products that carried the Indian flag, as referred to in your tweet…Amazon India is committed to respecting Indian laws and customs. To the extent that these items offered by a third-party seller in Canada offended Indian sensibilities, Amazon regrets the same. At no time did we intend or mean to offend Indian sentiments.”
Agarwal added that Amazon valued its “relationship with the Indian government, the country’s entrepreneurs and innovators, and most importantly our Indian customers and employees.”
With the company expecting to invest around $5 billion in the country, as stated last year by Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos, it is imperative for them to remain in the good books of the government. Amazon India’s Vice-President left no stone unturned to do so. He even suggested meeting the minister at her convenience to discuss the issue and Amazon’s relations with India.