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    Defence canteens to ban import of finished goods

    Synopsis

    ‘Direct imported’ items would include those that are shipped from other countries in finished form.

    Agencies
    Out of the 5,500 items sold by the CSD, around 420 are imported, according to the Manohar Parrikar Institute For Defence Studies and Analyses.
    (This story originally appeared in on Oct 24, 2020)
    NEW DELHI: In a major blow to companies ranging from FMCG and liquor to consumer durables and footwear, the government-controlled Canteen Stores Department (CSD), which operates canteens for the defence forces, is set to ban all ‘direct imported’ items.

    ‘Direct imported’ items would include those that are shipped from other countries in finished form. In the liquor segment, for instance, Scotch brands that are bottled in Scotland will be banned but those that have imported ingredients, but bottled in India, will continue to occupy the shelves.

    Out of the 5,500 items sold by the CSD, around 420 are imported, according to the Manohar Parrikar Institute For Defence Studies and Analyses. Among all the countries, China accounts for a bulk of the imported items such as toilet brushes, electric kettles, sandwich toasters, laptops and ladies’ handbags.

    The move is part of an effort to support PM Narendra Modi’s Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan that has been launched to promote domestic manufacturing, industry experts said. TOI has reviewed a copy of the order that has instructed army canteens to stop procurement of directly imported items. “We have received the order and are working out the formalities,” a senior official said. “It will take some time to implement.”

    The hardest hit will be companies that sell premium products such as imported liquor, high-end smartphones and consumer durables. “Imported liquor has very high margins,” said a senior industry executive.

    “Out of 10 bottles sold at army canteens, four are usually for people who don’t work in the armed forces such as friends and family. Companies that have a high exposure of imported items at army canteens will be the most affected.” CSD, which is one of the largest retail chains, caters to 12 million customers.
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    15 Comments on this Story

    Citizen36 days ago
    Some personnel/families just buy the Grocery items in bulk and anyone can tell that these are not just for their personal consumption, but for their relatives and friends too. There should be an upper limit (in number and value) for the grocery items bought, at least during the first ten days of the month, so that a few people don't corner all the available stuff, leaving the shelves empty for the rest of the month. The Canteen management, in its eagerness to increase its sales and profits, doesn't bother or lay down any restrictions, except for sundry items like biscuits. Restrictions should be there on the sale of High-value, attractive items also, so that these are not passed on to unentitled end-consumers. There should be very strict control on the sale and end-consumption of liquor, to prevent misuse of this privilege by some, who pass it on to their unentitled civilian friends.
    Kalpurush 39 days ago
    Great decision by Government of India. Another stepping stone to realize Atma Nirbhar Bharat.
    Marimuthu Kaliyamoorthy39 days ago
    A SEPARATE CHAIN OF BUSINESS IS GOING ON IN INDIA. INFINITE CROWDS OF BROKERS ASSEMBLE ON THE 1ST WEEK OF EVERY MONTH IN THE DEFENSE CANTEEN TO PROCURE ALL GOODS AND SELL IT IN THE BLOCK MARKET.
    GREAT LOSS TO GOVERNMENT OF INDIA IN THE NAME OF DEFENSE PERSONNEL.
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