Amazon boss Jeff Bezos arrives in India as local traders plan protests

FILE PHOTO: Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon and Blue Origin speaks during the JFK Space Summit, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, at the John F. Kennedy Library in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S., June 19, 2019. REUTERS/Katherine Taylor

MUMBAI (Reuters) - Inc AMZN.O founder Jeff Bezos arrived in India on Tuesday, according to a post on his Twitter account, as thousands of small traders across 300 cities planned protests, claiming the firm is distorting local retail market.

Bezos, dressed in an Indian attire, paid his regards at a memorial dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi, a video posted on Bezos’ Twitter account showed.

The billionaire e-commerce magnate, who is on a three-day visit, will attend a company event in New Delhi and is also likely to meet senior government officials, sources have said.

India’s antitrust chief Ashok Kumar Gupta told Reuters on Tuesday that big e-commerce companies in India should not offer deep discounts which can potentially hurt and small-scale brick and mortar retailers in India.

Hundreds and thousands of small brick-and-mortar retailers, led by the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT), have planned a countrywide protest against the company.

CAIT has also accused Amazon and Walmart-owned WMT.N Flipkart of violating India's foreign investment rules. The companies have denied the allegations.

Reporting by Promit Mukherjee; Editing by Jan Harvey