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Amazon Removes India Flag Doormats after being threatened by the Indian government. External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj lambasted Amazon after the Seattle-based ecommerce company’s Canadian store was found to be selling doormats depicting India’s flag.
The 62-year-old minister threatened to expel all foreign employees of Amazon from the country if it did not remove the controversial doormats from its store.
Swaraj also demanded the Seattle-based company to offer an unconditional apology, and withdraw all products insulting our national flag immediately.
Amazon has previously removed the controversial items from its stores. It is an embarrassing episode for Amazon at a time when it is looking to India as a major source of growth. Last year, CEO Jeff Bezos announced an additional $3 billion investment in India, adding that the company sees a big opportunity in the country. Amazon has so far invested over $5 billion in the country, and has already challenge the local giant Flipkart for the tentpole position.
Late last year, Amazon launched on-demand video streaming service Prime Video in India (along with 241 other nations and territories). In the run up to its launch, the company partnered with several of India’s largest movies and distribution studios for exclusive content rights.
The company is offering Prime Video access in the country for less than a dollar per month. Just to please the Indian authority, it is censoring some content in its catalog, an insider told us last month.