India-China standoff disrupts supply of Chinese goods in Kashmir

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Leh, Oct 29 (ANI): Moti market, a famous market for pearl and Chinese goods in Leh, is now witnessing a downfall in Chinese goods due to the palpable tension between India and China.

The few Chinese goods, which are available in the shops, are sold at higher rates.

Traders have not been allowed to go beyond a certain point at the border since tension erupted between India and China. They were earlier allowed upto Dumtselle, 300 kilometres east of Leh.

Rigzen Dawa, vice president of Moti Market Society, said that they have to buy goods from New Delhi, which costs them dear.

He hoped that the tension between the two countries would be resolved soon and trade will continue smoothly.

"There are around 215 shops and in most of the shops you get Chinese as well as Indian goods. Since last year during the Olympics in China, suddenly the goods which we used to get from our local traders stopped. These days, we are getting Chinese goods from New Delhi, which is very costly and very difficult to get. Because of less Chinese goods, a very few customers are coming here to buy the goods. I hope in future, the tension between China and India will resolve and trade system will restore at the border," said Dawa.

Shopkeepers said that since very few goods are available at the market, which too are sold are higher rates, customers are staying away from the market.

"Tension between India and China at the border has badly affected shopkeepers like us who are totally dependent on Chinese goods. At present very less customers are coming in this market to buy goods because the goods are very few and rates are very high. We mostly sell goods like Chinese soup bowls, small tea cups, blankets and flask," said Tashi Angmo, a shopkeeper.

Rigzen Chondol, another shopkeeper, said that due to the prevailing tension between the two countries, stocks have exhausted and the new ones are not coming.

"Because of the tension at the border area, people who used to get Chinese goods for us do not want to take risks anymore. So that's the reason why we are getting less Chinese goods and due to which our business is suffering," said Chondol.

There has been a flurry of reports in Indian media of Chinese incursions along the border. India this month protested against a Chinese embassy policy of issuing different visas to residents of Kashmir. By Jigmet Angchuk (ANI)

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