Agra: The growing interference of China in India’s efforts to ensure the global isolation of Pakistan on the issue of state-sponsored terrorism is being strongly resented by the citizens all over India and with the beginning of the festival season in the country, the people are strongly inclined to give China a taste of its own pie by boycotting Chinese goods on Diwali.
Taking a step in this direction, the bulk traders and importers of various Chinese goods, including toys and lighting products in Agra recently took a pledge to minimize the imports from China and also promote the domestic products in their place.
Bhartiya Muslim Vikas Parishad Chairman Sami Aghai and Hindustani Biradari secretary Ziauddin Qureshi told India Today that the boycott of Chinese goods began on the social media, with 7 out of 10 posts on this subject after the surgical strikes, but now it is not limited to the social media alone, spreading far and wide, having being adopted by social welfare organizations and traders guilds. Some social organisations have also launched signature campaigns, taking signed pledges from traders, making them promise they won’t import or sell Chinese products.
According to the business sources, there are more than 500 bulk traders and importers in Agra who deal in Chinese lighting products, but this Diwali, most of them have not imported the Chinese stuff and are instead, selling Indian lights.
Agra Vyapar Mandal President T N Agrawal told India Today that China has destroyed Indian markets, flooding them with cheap and sub-standard products and decreasing the demand for domestic products that were slightly more expensive but a whole lot better in quality. He said that the people will have to realize themselves that the Chinese products were not only destroying India economy, but they were also strengthening the economy of a country that sympathized with Pakistan and its terrorism-focused policies. He said that just like imported clothes were burned during the freedom struggle, the Agra traders will burn Chinese products this Diwali.
Agra Footwear Manufacturers and Exporters Chamber (AFMEC) President Puran Dawar said that despite Agra being the hub of footwear production in India, most of the domestic footwear industry of Agra has been destroyed by Chinese footwear and it is the correct time to increase resistance against the incursion of Chinese products into the Indian markets, otherwise the domestic industries of India will be wiped out.
A garment accessories trader in Agra’s Lohar Gali claimed that China has even entered the garment accessories business and today, the accessories market is filled with Chinese machine-made products like borders, buttons etc., destroying the livelihood of thousands of domestic cottage industry workers who toiled hard to make these products by hand. He said that the situation was so drastic that 90 percent of the sarees selling in Agra markets for this Karwachauth had one of more Chinese accessory attached to it, while merely four years back, all this work was done by Indian workers by hand.
Social activist Mohd. Akbar Qureshi said that India, Pakistan, Nepal and Bangladesh were the only markets for the sub-standard Chinese products, while most of the other countries did not compromise on quality. He said that the Indian government should establish some quality control measures to prevent China from flooding India with environmentally harmful and sub-standard goods.