Hyderabad: Several merchants and shop owners in Hyderabad’s Begum Bazar have decided to boycott Chinese goods following the violent standoff between India and China in Ladakh's Galwan valley which led to the death of at least 20 Indian soldiers.

The president of Hyderabad General Merchants Association, Sriram Vyas, on 18 June, said all wholesale and retail shops will stop buying and selling Chinese goods. The association has taken this decision to show its solidarity with the soldiers of the country, he said. “We unanimously took a decision after the sacrifices of our soldiers at the borders. As business people, this is the only way we can contribute,” he told NewsMeter.

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He further said there are a few shops in Begum Bazaar named China Market or China Bazaar. “We will make sure they change their names to India Bazaar,” he said.

Begum Bazaar is one of the biggest commercial markets in Hyderabad. Located in Afzalgunj, the bazaar has at least 800 shops and is famous for affordable household commodities. Businessmen from other states like Maharashtra, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh come here for wholesale deals, said shopkeepers. “We have household products, crockery items, imitation jewellery, toys, electronics like landline phones, and mosquito bats which are made in China. We want to stop buying and selling these Chinese items. With COVID-19, we’ve incurred losses but we are ready to face the burden. People will buy whatever we sell and this time there won’t be any Chinese goods for sale,” added the president.

Meanwhile, the association has also changed the timings of Begum Bazaar. Earlier, the market was open from 9 a.m to 8 p.m but from 19 June it will close at 5 p.m. “The COVID-19 situation in the city is serious and we have to take care of the safety of the shopkeepers. So, our shops will close at 5 p.m from now,” Mr. Vyas added.

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