Prof. (Dr. ) Ashok R. Patil
Director - Online Consumer Mediation Centre

FICCI always encourages and supports innovative ethical business in India. Recent new method of business is Direct Selling. The Direct Selling typically includes home selling situations such as door-to-door selling, appointments, referrals and product parties, as well as catalogues and the internet to disseminate information. Direct Selling has contributed significantly to socio-economic development of the nation in regards with generating self-employment opportunities, source of earning supplementary income, encouraging entrepreneurship, empowering women, imparting skill through various training programmes.

Therefore, Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Department of Consumer Affairs took a lead and released Model Framework for Guidelines on Direct Selling in 2016 in consultation with Ministry of Finance, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, Department of Legal Affairs, Department of Information Technology and Ministry of Corporate Affairs, State Governments and Direct Selling Industry. These guidelines are essentially granting credibility to the existing operating companies. This will further boost investor confidence and attract investors and foreign players to the Indian market.
 However, ratification of these guidelines into a statutory regulation is the necessary next step. At the Central level, Ministry of Consumer Affairs will monitor the Direct Selling industry, while the states have to put in place a regulatory mechanism for the same. Ratification of these guidelines into statutory regulation is a necessary next step, without which, enforceability of these guidelines will be difficult to maintain.