Swadeshi Jagaran Manch wants Oppo’s sponsorship of Indian cricket team scrapped
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New Delhi: An Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) affiliate on Thursday sought the sports ministry’s intervention for annulment of the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) contract with Chinese firm Oppo for sponsoring the Indian cricket team.
The Swadeshi Jagaran Manch (SJM), which has launched a campaign to push for indigenous production and consumption of goods, also wants India to cut down its dependence on exports from China.
“Money cannot be more important than national pride and welfare of our own citizens and industry and therefore we urge you to interfere in the matter and use your good offices to cancel the agreement entered into between Oppo and BCCI,” the SJM said in a letter to sports minister Vijay Goel.
The SJM said Indian cricket team members should not wear clothes bearing the logo of Oppo. “This would not only misguide our youth in blindly going for buying Chinese brands but would also place us in a very awkward position and our campaign is likely to get badly affected by this,” SJM’s national co-convener Ashwani Mahajan said in the letter.
Cricket is the most popular sport in India and the Indian team is being watched by almost the entire country. Therefore the team should not wear the Chinese firm’s logo, he added. The SJM also urged the Modi government to shun Chinese goods and enact a “buy Indian act”.
“Chinese goods have invaded Indian markets which is not only killing our domestic production but also has direct negative impact on employment generation efforts made by the government,” Mahajan said, adding it has taken shape of an “epidemic”. Oppo and the BCCI had signed a five-year team sponsorship deal worth Rs1,079 crore which was announced by the cricket board on 7 March, with the contract commencing on 1 April.
The Chinese mobile firm’s bid was almost five times the previous sponsor Star India’s bid. The Indian team will wear its new blue jersey with the Oppo logo during the ICC Champions Trophy.