During the hearing today (Jan 5), Competition Commission of India (CCI) Additional Solicitor General Venkataraman, appearing on behalf of the competition watchdog, made the submission that its investigation arm Director General (DG) has given an assurance that they will complete the ongoing investigation against Google within 60 days. Google also confirmed to the Court its cooperation with the investigation and the withdrawal of their petition.
Sijo Kuruvilla George, Executive Director, ADIF said “Google’s consistent attempts throughout have been to implement their mandatory PlayStore billing policy and to also delay or evade any antitrust indictment. By conveying to the Court that the CCI is expected to complete their investigation in 60 days, the antitrust regulator has essentially checkmated Google’s attempt to delay the overall antitrust investigation process by exploiting legal challenges.”
The commission is of the prima facie view that such a policy is unfair as it restricts the ability of app developers to select a payment processing system of their choice. We now look forward to the CCI report that is slated to be released in 60 days as was conveyed to the high court today.
We exhort Google to fully comply with the antitrust investigation in good faith. We also urge Google to maintain the status quo with respect to Play Store billing policy announcements until the investigation is complete.