This festive season, the patriotic fervour is flying high and bright just like the made-in-India diyas decking up houses. And the feeling of condemning Chinese products is so strong that in Sadar Bazar, Asia’s biggest wholesale market, shopkeepers are not only selling products made in the country, but have also put up hoardings of Make in India logo outside shops.
“I am an Indian and boycott products of countries which are against my nation. The Make in India logo is to spread the message among people that we are against Chinese products,” says Tarun Sehgal, a shop owner who is in the business of selling crackers for generations. Not just logos, shopkeepers have installed boards saying they will not sell any Chinese products. “I strongly condemn the killing of soldiers at the India-Pakistan border, and since China supports Pakistan, I don’t want to hurt the sentiments of our patriots,” adds Sehgal.
However, the space crunch in Sadar Bazar doesn’t allow everyone to put up such boards. “Like some other shops, we were also planning to hang a board outside with a Make in India. However, we appreciate those who have taken this step,” says Kapil Sachdeva, another shop owner in the area.
Another shop in the area with a Make in India logo. (Saket Wahane)
The owners have their own ideology behind propagating Indian products. While some says it is because China ditched India, others want to promote Indian artisans. “The logo has nothing to do with the border issue. Mera maksad hamare Hindustan ke karigaro ko badhava dena hai. (My motive is to promote the Indian artisans and their work. My shop offers only Indian products,” says Mahesh Sharma, a shop owner in Chandni Chowk.
Gurgaon, too, is not far behind in this regard. Bombay sale, Bombay bazaar are the echoes one hear in Sadar Bazar, Gurgaon. Shopkeeper Mohd Asif, who has been running his shop for the past 10 years by the name of China Bazaar, was compelled to change his shop’s name in light of people protesting its association with Chinese products. Asif shares that the change in demand happened after the Uri attacks. “People had stopped visiting our shop and would often argue and give threats asking us to change our name to Bombay Bazaar or India Bazaar. Pehli baar itna hua hai dus saal mein (This has happened for the first time in ten years),” he says.