As Banarasi saris quality falls, govt finds a Chinese connection; plans to cut silk imports

As Banarasi saris quality falls, govt finds a Chinese connection; plans to cut silk imports

Amid rising border tensions with the Dragon country, India may have found a new weapon in its arsenal after banning various Chinese apps including popular mobile game PUBG. The central government is mulling on attacking Chinese silk imports after officials from the textile ministry informed a standing committee on labour that the quality of banarasi silk saris in general was depleting due to cheap imports from China, The Indian Express cited a source as saying. The officials have now informed a Parliamentary standing committee that the center is now contemplating measures to discourage silk imports from China.

The central government’s plans were conveyed during a meeting of the standing committee on labour on Monday. The committee deliberated on the subject of “Challenges and Opportunities — Indian Textile Industry”, a source said, the newspaper reported. The ministry is reportedly going to announce the move soon.

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While there is no blanket ban on Chinese imports, the center has been discouraging the same for sometime now in the midst of the pandemic as anti-China sentiment has also strengthened. The government has also pushed for boosting domestic manufacturing and cutting exports even while not explicitly stating that imports from so and so countries need to be curbed. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call for Make in India, Atmanirbhar Bharat and Vocal for Local have one thing in common; reduce foreign products, make local and focus on exports.

Meanwhile, this is not the first move by the central government to curb imports and discourage products made out of India. In fact, the central government has deployed methods to cut down on imports such as directing e-commerce companies to display ‘Country of Origin’ tag prominently for products that are listed on their platforms to push domestic companies. Further, other countries have also raised their concerns regarding purchase of textile from China. For instance, the US is likely to also announce a ban on cotton imports from Xinjiang region of China.

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