A recent version of displaying nationalism is the call to boycott Chinese products. The appeal would have acquired nationalistic sense if it would have been guided by the desire to protect the local producers and workers in India. But the call for boycott is only because of Chinese position on Kashmir. Using the same logic, will the same nationalism be displayed by boycotting oil import from Organization for Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC)? Some of the OPEC countries too have been critical of India on Kashmir issue. Will the same be displayed by reducing dependence from abroad on arms? 70% of Indian military arms are produced outside. Will the same nationalism be displayed by boycotting the products produced by Union Carbide (renamed as Ever-ready) and stopping their Indian operations? Union carbide had created a human disaster in Bhopal but succeeded in going scot free and continue to operate.

Dependency on China is not only for cheaper products such as crackers and toys, but also for higher end products such as electronics and machinery. Some of the popular brands of higher end mobiles are from China such as Lenovo, Gionee, Xiaomi, One plus. Will the nationalists put an end to usage of higher end mobiles including i phones produced in China. How can one describe the statue of unity, the grand project to construct the statue of Vallabhai Patel being made in China? How can construction of the statue by a Chinese firm Jiangxi Tongqing foundry be described?

How can the attempt of Prime Minister, to woo the Chinese investors to invest in India, be described. In his visit to China in May 2015, he met 22 CEOs of top Chinese companies and appealed for investments in India. The whole concept of ‘Make in India’ too is based on the idea of converting India into a sweatshop and a source of cheap labour for ‘foreign companies’, including that of Chinese.

The usage of the word nationalism in the name of boycotting Chinese products is a matter of convenience. Why not boycott all the junk products produced abroad in any country which keep getting advertised on TV through teleshopping. The call for boycotting Chinese products is just another means of creating jingoism through pointing an external enemy and building xenophobia around the same.

T. Navin works with an NGO as a Researcher. He did his M.Phil from Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU)





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  1. Raj, the Human says:

    I am not sure what exactly is the problem with these JNU students and their ideologies. India had been ruled by Secular Congress for around 6 decades and you blame India’s dependence on Military imports, electronic imports, Diwali crackers etc on the present Govt. How can anyone change the whole course of direction of the country just in 2 years? At least we now have a PM who thinks in a different way. China is not made such a powerful Nation in a single day or two. As per a famous Chinese Proverb, even a journey to the Moon has to start with a single,first foot step. This is what actually the present PM is doing. Whats wrong in that?
    I agree that its almost impossible to say no to Oil imports from OPEC just because they are critical of India’s policy on Kashmir. But its only a few countries among OPEC that have commented on India’s Kashmir Policy, not the OPEC itself because they see India as their saviour customer in this present day of dwindling oil prices.
    As an Indian, everyone including this author should pray for a day when India doesn’t depend on oil imports and be self-reliant through renewable energy sources. But for that all citizens must develop Scientific outlook, instead of criticising the PM who works for us.

  2. K SHESHU BABU says:

    Boycott of Chinese products is to protest against Chinese policy on India as well as indirect support to corporates like ramdev who are eying to capture ‘ desi’ markets with his products. This is a design to promote self-interest of rights in the garb of nationalism.

    • Raj, the Human says:

      Dear Seshu Babu, whats wrong if the Govt of India tries to capture ‘Desi’ market and that too via a Desi (Ramdev Baba). Is it not better than draining away all the Forex Reserves by importing all those junk/garbage produced by China? Whats wrong if Govt gives a call to earn ‘Self-Respect’ instead of patronising the foreign companies like HLL, Coke, Pepsi, Walkers etc?
      Why do you think that ‘Desi’ products are harming you more than pesticide infected Coke and Pepsis?