New Delhi: In an effort to promote local goods under the Aatmanirbhar Bharat scheme, the Narendra Modi-led government has reportedly ordered 4,000 army shops in the country to stop buying imported goods, a decision that could send an unwelcome signal to foreign liquor companies —Diageo and Pernod Ricard. Also Read - Shipping Ministry to be Renamed: PM Modi
“A number of imported items are going to be stopped from being sold in the Canteen Stores Department (CSD) and the unit run canteens under it,” news agency ANI quoted defence sources as saying. Also Read - Is Akshay Kumar’s ‘FAU-G’ Game Poster Really Copied From a Stock Image? No, Clarify The Makers
If reports are to be believed, the October 19 internal order from the defense ministry asserted that the matter had been discussed with the armed forces including the army, air force, and navy in May and July and was aimed at supporting Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Vocal for Local’ call and Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan (Self-Reliant India Campaign). Also Read - 'Landmark Achievement For Atmanirbhar Bharat': DRDO Successfully Tests Made-in-India Hypersonic Vehicle
Though the order did not specify which products would be targeted, reports claimed that the import of foreign liquor is also likely to be stopped for sale in canteens. For the last many months, high-end foreign liquor brands have not been made available in most of the unit run canteens.
According to an August research column of the government-funded Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA), a ban on selling imported items will not affect the interests of consumers in any manner. At present, the foreign-made items sold through the Canteen Stores Department (CSD) constitute about six to seven per cent of the total sales value.
The CSD runs one of the largest retail store chains in the country with over 3,500 canteens spread from Siachen glacier in the north to Andaman and Nicobar Islands territory in the southernmost part of the country.
Of the over 5,000 different items sold through the CSD, around 400 are imported. Of these, the majority of items are from Chinese firms including toilet brushes, diaper pants, rice cookers, electric kettles, sandwich toasters, vacuum cleaners, sunglasses, ladies’ handbags, laptops and desktop computers.