The Ministry of External Affairs on Thursday confirmed that global e-tailer giant Amazon has withdrawn the doormats bearing the Indian national flag.
“Our mission in Ottawa took up the matter with Amazon Canada. They are no longer selling that item,” an official said confirming that the doormats that were meant for Canada were no longer available. The withdrawal came after External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj threatened visa boycott against employees of the e-tailer on Wednesday.
“Amazon must tender unconditional apology. They must withdraw all products insulting our national flag immediately,” said Ms Swaraj on social media site Twitter, adding, “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 messages from Ms Swaraj drew huge online response including some from Twitter handles of the e-tailer that stated that the product was not sold in India.
“These products were never sold on Amazon.in (the company’s Indian wing). We have escalated this to our concerned teams and are working on the issue.”
Following the demand from Ms Swaraj, MEA indicated that it wants global withdrawal of the doormats.
The episode is the latest controversy to hit Amazon over India-linked items. Last year, the company withdrew footmats that had Hindu deities and images inscribed on them. The company had similarly drawn criticism for selling footmats bearing Islamic inscriptions.