Will Shunning Foreign Goods Help India?

Today I received a passionate plea by Simple Thoughts (popular Java & Web Technology blog) contact form from Rajesh Kannan, who apparently forwarded the email from someone else. I am enclosing his letter in full below:

rajeshkannan wrote: This mail forward from a friend, request you to go thro and apply your introspection, pls remember that 80 : 20 rule can work even here. U CAN MAKE A HUGE DIFFERENCE TO THE INDIAN ECONOMY BY FOLLOWING FEW SIMPLE STEPS. Please spare a couple of minutes here… for the sake of India … our country. I got this article from one of my friend, but it’s true, I can see this from day to day life, Small example, Before 5 months 1 CAN $ = IND Rs 32 After 5 months. Now it is 1 CAN $ = IND Rs 37 Do you think Canadian Economy is booming? No, but Indian Economy is Going Down. Our Economy is in u’r hands INDIAN economy is in a crisis. Our country like many other ASIAN countries is undergoing a severe economic crunch. Many INDIAN industries are closing down. The INDIAN economy is in a crisis and if we do not take proper steps to control those, we will be in a critical situation. More than 30000 crore rupees of foreign exchange are being siphoned out of our country on products such as cosmetics, snacks, tea, beverages… etc which are grown, produced and consumed here. A cold drink that costs only 70 / 80 paisa to produce is sold for NINE rupees, and a major chunk of profits from these are sent abroad. This is a serious drain on INDIAN economy. We have nothing against Multinational companies, but to protect our own interests we request everybody to use INDIAN products only for next two years. With the rise in petrol prices, if we do not do this, the rupee will devalue further and we will end up paying much more for the same products in the near future. What you can do about it? 1. Buy only products manufactured by WHOLLY INDIAN COMPANIES. 2. ENROLL as many people as possible for this cause. Each individual should become a leader for this awareness. This is the only way to save our country from severe economic crisis. You don’t need to give-up your lifestyle. You just need to choose an alternate product. All categories of products are available from WHOLLY INDIAN COMPANIES. LIST OF PRODUCTS COLD DRINKS: USE: - LEMON JUICE, FRESH FRUIT JUICES, CHILLED LASSI (SWEET OR SOUR), BUTTER MILK, COCONUT WATER, JALJEERA, ENERJEE, and MASALA MILK… INSTEAD OF: - COCA COLA, PEPSI, LIMCA, MIRINDA, SPRITE BATHING SOAP: USE - CINTHOL & OTHER GODREJ BRANDS, SANTOOR, WIPRO SHIKAKAI, MYSORE SANDAL, MARGO, NEEM, EVITA, MEDIMIX, GANGA, NIRMA BATH & CHANDRIKA INSTEAD OF - LUX, LIFEBOY, REXONA, LIRIL, DOVE, PEARS, HAMAM, LESANCY, CAMAY, PALMOLIVE TOOTH PASTE: - USE - NEEM, BABOOL, PROMISE, VICO VAJRADANTI, PRUDENT, DABUR PRODUCTS, MISWAK INSTEAD OF - COLGATE, CLOSE UP, PEPSODENT, CIBACA, FORHANS, MENTADENT. TOOTH BRUSH: - USE – PRUDENT, AJANTA, PROMISE INSTEAD OF - COLGATE, CLOSE UP, PEPSODENT, FORHANS, ORAL-B SHAVING CREAM: USE - GODREJ, EMANI INSTEAD OF - PALMOLIVE, OLD SPICE, GILLETE BLADE:- USE - SUPERMAX, TOPAZ, LAZER, ASHOKA INSTEAD OF - SEVEN-O -CLOCK, 365, GILLETTE TALCUM POWDER: USE - SANTOOR, GOKUL, CINTHOL, WIPRO BABY POWDER, BOROPLUS INSTEAD OF - PONDS, OLD SPICE, JOHNSON BABY POWDER, SHOWER TO SHOWER MILK POWDER: USE - INDIANA, AMUL, AMULYA INSTEAD OF - ANIKSPRAY, MILKANA, EVERYDAY MILK, MILKMAID. SHAMPOO: USE - LAKME, NIRMA, VELVET INSTEAD OF - HALO, ALL CLEAR, NYLE, SUNSILK, HEAD AND SHOULDERS, PANTENE MOBILE CONNECTIONS : USE - BSNL, AIRTEL INSTEAD OF - HUTCH Every INDIAN product you buy makes a big difference. It saves INDIA. Let us take a firm decision today. BUY INDIAN TO BE INDIAN we are not against of foreign products. WE ARE NOT ANTI-MULTINATIONAL. WE ARE TRYING TO SAVE OUR NATION. EVERY DAY IS A STRUGGLE FOR A REAL FREEDOM. WE ACHIEVED OUR INDEPENDENCE AFTER LOSING MANY LIVES. THEY DIED PAINFULLY TO ENSURE THAT WE LIVE PEACEFULLY. THE CURRENT TREND IS VERY THREATENING. MULTINATIONALS CALL IT GLOBALISATION OF INDIAN ECONOMY. FOR INDIANS LIKE YOU AND ME IT IS RECOLONISATION OF INDIA … THE COLONIST’S LEFT INDIA THEN. BUT THIS TIME THEY WILL MAKE SURE THEY DON’T MAKE ANY MISTAKES. WHO WOULD LIKE TO LET A” GOOSE THAT LAYS GOLDEN EGGS” SLIP AWAY. PLEASE REMEMBER: POLITICAL FREEDOM IS USELESS WITHOUT ECONOMIC INDEPENDENCE. RUSSIA, S.KOREA, MEXICO …………THE LIST IS VERY LONG!! LET US LEARN FROM THEIR EXPERIENCE AND FROM OUR HISTORY. LET US DO THE DUTY OF EVERY TRUE INDIAN. FINALLY: IT’S OBVIOUS THAT U CAN’T GIVE UP ALL OF THE ITEMS MENTIONED ABOVE, SO GIVE UP ATLEAST ONE ITEM TO FOR THE SAKE OF OUR COUNTRY. We would be sending useless forwards to our friends daily. Instead please forward this mail to all your friends to create awareness. “LITTLE DROPS MAKE A GREAT OCEAN.”

BTW: He makes a good point about paying 9Rs for coke or pepsi which costs less than a rupee to make. Seriously I can never understand why people waste so much over sugar water. I very rarely drink coke / pepsi these days.

The bottomline is that he thinks that shunning foreign products will help India. Today, at the bank, a bank staff tried hard to explain to me that Indian banking fundamentals are good and we are suffering solely because globalization is allowing us to be affected by US recession. During the US election campaign, now President-elect, Barack Obama talked about reducing outsourcing by penalizing companies which resort to outsourcing, which is also in the similar vein.

When in trouble, countries and individuals think about how they can close the door to others so their wealth gets better distributed within their people. All talks of “world citizen” and globalization goes out of the door as we become busy to shutter ourselves in a cocoon of apparent safety. Is this right?

It will be fun to see what happens when every country implements their version of closed door policies. US will stop outsourcing, India will throw out Coke, Pepsi, IBM and millions of other US products flooding out market and so on. Frankly both country can survive on their own. But will such narrow-mindedness ultimately help the countries in the long run? What do you think?

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