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Saturday, June 3, 2023

IAMAI promoting anti-Bharat, pro-Big Tech views: MapmyIndia CEO

Rohan Verma, CEO & Executive Director, MapmyIndia, on Monday slammed the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) for parroting and promoting views that are “anti-Indian and pro-foreign Big Tech”.

In a detailed tweet, Verma said that it is sad to see an organisation originally founded by and for Bharatiya companies has been taken over by Big Tech representatives and is now promoting a false narrative.

The IAMAI now has members who are the top Bharatiya heads of Big Tech firms like Google, Microsoft, Meta and others.

The association has also prepared a draft submission on whether Bharat needs a separate law to tame Big Tech’s anti-competitive practices.

“IAMAI views and submissions to the government and media on digital policies, regulations, laws etc are completely wrong and antithetical to what Indians — consumers, industry, government — need,” Verma posted.

“Every country has its own trade bodies that promote their domestic companies in their domestic market and enable them internationally. Sad to see various Indian trade bodies lured by and acting on behalf of the interest of foreign companies,” added Verma, who runs Bharat’s leading advanced digital maps provider MapmyIndia.

When contacted, Verma told IANS that organisations like IAMAI are trying to harm the Bharatiya government’s aim to build a safe and open Internet and safeguard its “digital nagriks’ data from Big Tech firms.

“They are welcomed in India to do business but they should not promote a false narrative about the country’s digital laws and needs,” he noted. MapMyIndia was earlier a member of IAMAI but not anymore.

“Either IAMAI must change immediately to truly reflect the voice and aspirations of India or be given no credence,” Verma added.

The Bharatiya tech sector has made significant contributions to the Bharatiya economy, creating jobs and driving growth in various sectors.

However, the growth of the industry is being hampered by the unfair practices of Big Tech companies like Google, according to the Alliance of Digital India Foundation (ADIF), the apex body for Indian startups.

“The Indian startups are seeking very basic rights, including the absence of conflict of interest, Big Tech not resorting to self-preferencing, non-bundling of particular services by Big Tech as announced by the CCI in its latest order, thus leading to a fair, transparent and democratic internet ecosystem, to create a level-playing field for Indian startups and to promote fair competition in the digital economy,” an ADIF spokesperson said last month.

The ADIF also said that Bharat has initiated the groundwork to understand the nuances of digital markets and reflect on the need for such a law.

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed with minor edits to conform to HinduPost style-guide.)

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