CCI is said to have appointed former WhatsApp Executive, government officials as new members

India’s antitrust body has appointed three new members to oversee cases, including a former commerce ministry official and a former temporary compliance officer from WhatsAppsaid sources with direct knowledge of the matter.

The new members appointed are Anil Agrawal, a former police official who recently worked in India’s Ministry of Commerce and worked on various startup initiatives and setting up the government’s e-commerce network, Open network for digital commerce. He confirmed the appointment to Reuters but declined to elaborate.

Two other appointments are Sweta Kakkad, a lawyer whose LinkedIn the profile showed that she is a former interim chief compliance officer at WhatsApp. The third appointee is Deepak Anurag, who is a former civil servant who worked at the Comptroller and Auditor General of India.

Kakkad and Anurag could not be reached for comment. The appointment decisions were finalized and taken by the federal government, the sources said.

That Competition Commission of India (CCI) did not respond to inquiries from Reuters.

The appointments come at a time when the CCI is investigating several high-profile global companies for alleged breaches of antitrust laws, including Amazon, Walmart‘s Flipkart, Google and spirits giant Pernod Ricard.

The appointment of senior members is essential for the functioning of the CCI. In May, India appointed Ravneet Kaur as the chairperson of the CCI. Kaur held several positions in the government over the past two decades, including as chairperson of India Tourism Development between 2017 and 2019.

© Thomson Reuters 2023

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