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India warns Amazon over alleged insults to flag

NEW DELHI: India on Wednesday sought an apology from Amazon for selling “insulting” doormats featuring its national flag and threatened to bar foreigners working for the e-commerce giant from entering the country unless the products were withdrawn.
Foreign minister Sushma Swaraj slammed the company in a series of tweets, calling the sale of doormats featuring the Indian flag on Amazon’s Canadian website an “unacceptable” insult to the country.
“Amazon must tender unconditional apology. They must withdraw all products insulting our national flag immediately,” Swaraj said on Twitter.
“If this is not done forthwith, we will not grant Indian Visa to any Amazon official. We will also rescind the Visas issued earlier,” she said.
The row erupted after a Twitter user sent Swaraj a screengrab of the doormats on sale.
There was no immediate reaction from the global e-retailer, which also sells merchandise featuring the flags of other countries including Canada, the United States and Britain.
Amazon has made steady inroads in India, with plans to invest $5 billion in the country since entering the cut-throat, rapidly growing e-commerce market in 2013.