Rahul Gandhi wants to stop sale of Chinese mobiles in India; here’s why

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Updated: February 16, 2017 4:59:18 PM

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi today raised the issue of increasing sale of Chinese products, especially mobile phones, in India.

 rahul gandhi, china, rahul china, rahul gandhi china, chinese mobile phone makers, lenovo, boycott chinese products, boycott china, boycott chinese items, boycott china, oppo, xiaomi, uttar pradesh assembly elections, sitapur, rahul gandhi sitapur, rahul sitapur, uttar pradesh, up election, up elections 2017, up 2017, uttar pradesh newsCongress vice-president Rahul Gandhi waves at an election rally in Barabanki district on Wednesday. (PTI Photo)

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi today took a dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Make in India’ programme, saying it has failed in generating local employment. Not only this, he also raised the issue of increasing sale of Chinese products, especially mobile phones, in India.

Speaking at an election rally in Sitapur ahead of the third phase of Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, Rahul said, “Chinese Mobiles are being sold in India and India’s money is going to China. We want that Indian products be
sold in China so that money would come here.”  It was reported by Hindi news channel ETV.

The third phase of Assembly Elections in Uttar Pradesh will take place on February 19. In the first two phases, Samajwadi-Party Congress alliance claimed they are cruising towards a swift victory, However, the alliance’s opponents BSP and BJP have also made similar claimed. Results of the seven-phase poll in the state will be announced on March 11.

Months after a ‘Boycott Chinese Products’ campaign run by some vested groups threatened to impact Sino-Indian trade relations, the Congress leader’s remark in Sitapur, however, may trigger a new controversy. The ‘Boycott Chinese Campaign’ had failed to impact the growth of Chinese mobile phone sale in India. According to a PTI report on January 4, captured around 40% market share in India in 2016. Among the highest gainers was Lenovo which captured the second spot after Korean giant Samsung, while Xiaomi took the third spot with 10.7% market share.

The PTI report was based on a survey conducted across 30 cities in India. While the Chinese phone makers’ market
share increased, India companies witnessed a decline in their fortunes in 2016. The survey found that Indian smartphone maker Microsoft’s recorded a 16.7% sales drop in October 2016.

Talking about ‘Make in India’, Rahul said that the programme has not focussed on generating local employment. “How will ‘Make in India’ be possible if it can’t generate employment in the country?” Rahul questioned.

Rahul’s claim on both Chinese mobile phones and Make in India, however, doesn’t hold water. A number of Chinese smartphone makers have invested in India, or are planning to invest, to manufacture their products locally. OPPO already has a factory in Greater Noida and it is planning to invest $215 million for setting up an industrial park in India. In 2015 itself, Lenovo started local manufacturing at Sriperambudur, Chennai.

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