Anything Made In India Including By MNCs Is Local For Us, BJP Says
Farmers transporting wheat husk by tractor travel along a road during a partial lockdown in Uttar Pradesh, India. (Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg)

Anything Made In India Including By MNCs Is Local For Us, BJP Says

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For the Bharatiya Janata Party, anything that's manufactured in India—including by multinational companies—are local products and it would not distinguish between them.

Responding to questions on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call for an Aatm Nirbhar Bharat, or Self-Reliant India, BJP spokesperson GVL Narasimha Rao said there is not going to be any directive to buy local products. People might themselves see need to purchase good-quality Made in India goods, he added.

"When we say local, it is not just local products made by domestic firms. Anything that is manufactured in India for us is local,” Rao told the Press Trust of India. "Anything made locally, we won't make a distinction, there is not going to be any directive. You buy this or buy that, there is no directive, this will all be individual decisions.”

India has demonstrated, even during the Covid-19 crisis, how to organise for its own needs, while most countries were dependent on other nations. India has helped more than 100 countries by supplying medicines, and produced tens of lakhs of N95 masks which were hardly made in the past.

"It is not just in times of crisis (that we become self-reliant), it has to become life's mantra," he said. "We have the capability and capacity, we should really strive to make everything of great quality. That will also afford us opportunity to export. It is not just local opportunity. This will also help us to go global.”

Promoting local products is not a government-driven agenda, he said. What is needed is “mindset change”. “We have to give up this impression that foreign is better.”

On the prime minister's call for national self-reliance and to become vocal about local, Rao said, "This is not an isolationist policy, we are not going towards protectionism. It is not inward looking."

Also Read: Modi’s Self-Reliance Call May Spell Protectionist Turn for India

"There is certainly a call for greater quality, greater efficiency, and improving the local product lines—not only to capture the entire local market but also go global. This is not a protectionist approach as many people seem to think.

"This is certainly strengthening, reforming, revitalising your own product line, your own economy, your own manufacturing sector so that you compete with the best in the world. It's not giving up better or buying local by force. It's purely mindset change that the prime minister talked about," he added.

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