"The proposal is being processed by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP). Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi too has submitted an application," an official said.

In January, Apple had filed proposal seeking permission for single-brand retailing and sell products online but due to certain gaps in the application, DIPP had sought more information from the US-based technology giant.

According to the sources, the government could exempt the Cupertino-based company from the mandatory local sourcing norm of 30 per cent as it makes 'state-of-the-art' and 'cutting edge' technology products.

Last year, the government had relaxed the foreign direct investment (FDI) policy for single-brand retailing. The government had said it may also relax the sourcing norms for entities undertaking single-brand retailing of products having 'state-of-the-art' and 'cutting edge' technology and where local sourcing is not possible.

Further, sources said Xiaomi too has submitted an application with the DIPP to open single-brand retail stores in the country. Currently, they sells their products through e-commerce and offline platforms.

Single-brand retailers are also allowed to take e-commerce route for such trading. At present, 100 percent FDI is permitted in the sector but the companies are required to take FIPB permission if the limit exceeds 49 percent.