Editors Note: In a display of protectionism, the state of Tamil Nadu in Southern India is promoting local soft drink brands over soft drinks manufactured by MNCs. Donald Trump’s protectionist attitude is allegedly for the benefit of the US people and economy. Why shouldn’t countries like India also move to protect their fledgling businesses and citizens in a similar way.
Starting March 1, traders in the State will not sell popular soft drinks and mineral water brands of multinational companies. They will instead encourage Indian brands.
Tamil Nadu Vanigar Sangangalin Peramaipu president A.M. Vikramaraja said the whole of February would be spent on educating traders and consumers about the evils of these foreign brands.
“They cause more harm than good to the body. Only recently, one of the brands had admitted to the fact that it was not suitable for children and that it contained certain harmful chemicals,” he said.
Mr. Vikramaraja said that though the association, which has as many as 6,000 affiliated member associations and 15.87 lakh members, had been fighting Kinley and Pepsico from 1998, they were unable to stop selling them as there was a demand from consumers.
“During the recent protest by students demanding conduct of jallikattu, the youngsters had sought a ban on these soft drinks since they draw our groundwater and take the profits outside the country. Encouraged by that, we are taking this campaign forward,” he said.
Mr. Vikramaraja also said that the Peramaipu would also ask restaurants and hotels too to not sell these brands.
ARTICLE SOURCE: The Hindu