Tricolour doormats: No visas, Sushma Swaraj warns Amazon

She warned that if Amazon did not apologise, none of its “officials” would be granted Indian visas, and the visas issued earlier would also be rescinded.

Written by Shubhajit Roy , Pranav Mukul | New Delhi | Published:January 12, 2017 3:52 am
amazon, sushma swaraj, sushma amazon, swaraj, amazon.com, tricolour doormats, india flag doormats, doormat sale, amazon canada, visa, indian visa, swaraj cancel vis, visa cancelled, indian express news, india news The issue was brought to her notice by a Twitter user, Atul Bhobe, who posted a screenshot of the products.

TAKING STRONG objection to Amazon Canada selling doormats depicting the Indian flag, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday asked the online retailer to withdraw the products and tender an unconditional apology.

She warned that if Amazon did not apologise, none of its “officials” would be granted Indian visas, and the visas issued earlier would also be rescinded.

Read | Amazon removes Indian flag doormat link after visa threat

“Amazon must tender unconditional apology. They must withdraw all products insulting our national flag immediately… If this is not done forthwith, we will not grant Indian visa to any Amazon official. We will also rescind the visas issued earlier,” she tweeted.

“Indian High Commission in Canada: This is unacceptable. Please take this up with Amazon at the highest level,” tweeted the minister, who is recuperating after her kidney transplant surgery.

The issue was brought to her notice by a Twitter user, Atul Bhobe, who posted a screenshot of the products. “@SushmaSwaraj Madam. Amazon Canada must be censured and warned not to sell India flag doormats. Please take action,” Bhobe tweeted.

While Amazon is yet to issue an official response, it responded to those who raised the issue on Twitter. “These products were never sold on Amazon.in. We have escalated this to our concerned teams and are working on the issue,” @AmazonHelp tweeted.

Amazon’s Canada portal also has doormats depicting the Canadian, American and British flags. Its portals in the US, UK, France and Germany also have doormats depicting the American and British flags.

In August last year, Amazon came under attack for selling doormats with images of Hindu gods and goddesses. The doormats were later removed.

Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos, who has met Prime Minister Narendra Modi at least twice in the last two-and-a-half years — in October 2014 and June 2016, had announced $ 3 billion investment in India during his 2016 visit.

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  1. N
    Nana
    Jan 12, 2017 at 3:12 am
    I need 100000of them. Any suppliers?
    Reply
    1. M
      Meaw
      Jan 12, 2017 at 2:36 am
      These are made in India, Gujarat...Not kidding
      Reply
      1. R
        Ravinder singh
        Jan 12, 2017 at 6:38 am
        It's good step by her. Thanks. I wish other people also understand any countries flags don't use for this things..flag means pride. Thanks shushma g
        Reply
        1. S
          Shakri
          Jan 12, 2017 at 2:27 am
          This isn't d way to deal diplomatic affairs . Creative ruckus on internet by ministerial head of diplomats . Those people wear even inners of their flag design . Mere req letter was enough to TC of such issues to not happen .
          Reply
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            bala Raja
            Jan 12, 2017 at 3:13 am
            One needs to understand that some people take pride in having their flag colors on everything. This doesn't mean disrespect. In fact, it's the opposite. India has the most restrictive and thin-skinned interpretation of everything related to the so-called national symbols. The law here treats everything with suion and paranoia, and even simple mistakes like flying the flag upside down is considered an offense. Ironically, murder, m molestation and deep corruption are not insults to the country. Yeah, you don't like someone putting the tricolor on certain things. It's not illegal elsewhere. And the intent is also not to disrespect but show an attachment. Put this in perspective and grow a thicker skin about these things. Also, I don't think it's necessary for the hyper active Sushma to have gotten engaged in this. A consumer level resistence to the product would have sufficed.
            Reply
            1. B
              bala Raja
              Jan 12, 2017 at 3:16 am
              Relax man.
              Reply
              1. W
                wahabi
                Jan 12, 2017 at 3:45 am
                What is the big deal, they sell American , British flag doormat also. And the way Sushma ji handled the matter , it seems having a ms appeal is more important to her than deft diplomacy. Loose statements can't be accepted . This crazy symbolism and nationalism is of no good.
                Reply
                1. J
                  Jinesh Balakrishnan
                  Jan 12, 2017 at 10:59 am
                  For an Indian, this is highly insulting. In India, we leave footwear outside the house when visiting people - why? We garland people or their photos with shoes to show contempt. We hurl shoes at people to show disrespect. In such a culture, having your flag on a doormat, on which you wipe your shoes - or have others wipe their shoes - is extremely insulting.lt;br/gt;You can call it thin-skinned or whatever - but it is not only bad manners, it is truly an insulting slap on our face, and I think Sushmaji did the right thing to convey that we take offense for this act.
                  Reply
                  1. J
                    Jinesh Balakrishnan
                    Jan 12, 2017 at 11:08 am
                    When a martyr's body is wrapped in tricolor, it shows the country's reverence. When someone questionable had his body wrapped in tricolor, Indians have strongly protested against it (as happened in Dadri). It really DOES matter a lot for us Indians.
                    Reply
                    1. K
                      Khote Nav
                      Jan 12, 2017 at 3:12 am
                      Amazon sells lots of US flag doormats, and I don't recall any US official being riled up about it.
                      Reply
                      1. A
                        Arun
                        Jan 12, 2017 at 3:59 am
                        Instead of showing her sanghi background and making threats, a simple tweet saying this is unacceptable and take it down ASAP!
                        Reply
                        1. R
                          Ramesh Nittoor
                          Jan 12, 2017 at 1:22 am
                          It is a pin-prick issue and Hon Minister is deploying a sledge hammer. Wish one of her well-wishers who has read John Steinbeck, conveys the perspective why such matters are better left as is.
                          Reply
                          1. R
                            Ramesh Nittoor
                            Jan 12, 2017 at 3:24 am
                            Joyce, admire your pride for India and respect the sentiment which stirred this anger in you. Think you err by aping China on this matter. India has to think differently, set its criteria per its free speech values, which makes room for dissent and even disrespect. For, only then you obtain discernment to separate grain from chaff, or as Adi Shankara said distinguish real from unreal. If you agree with this premise John Steinbeck, an American Nobel Laureate in Literature is quite relevant.
                            Reply
                            1. C
                              comet
                              Jan 12, 2017 at 3:39 am
                              supreme court is free and has lot of time, why not tell it to make rule for this. this will be less menace than another rule it could be creating in the meanwhile
                              Reply
                              1. C
                                comet
                                Jan 12, 2017 at 3:37 am
                                what nonsense she is talking when someone has paid hundreds of dollars to get visa, how can she make it void?
                                Reply
                                1. O
                                  omprakash sharma
                                  Jan 12, 2017 at 12:53 am
                                  Seize the entire movable and immovable ets of Amazon without any explanation .. DISRESPECTFULLY SELLING OUR NATIONAL. FLAG...SHAME O. CEO OF CO ,IF WISITS INDIA ,PUT HIM BEHIND. BAR...
                                  Reply
                                  1. P
                                    poo ki
                                    Jan 12, 2017 at 1:13 am
                                    Indian companies should be producing toilet rolls with Canadian flag.
                                    Reply
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                                      Chellam
                                      Jan 12, 2017 at 7:03 am
                                      "Amazon’s Canada portal also has doormats depicting the CANADIAN, American and British flags. Its portals in the US, UK, France and Germany also have doormats depicting the American and British flags".lt;br/gt;Why should Sushma make the country a laughing stock of the world under threat of a bhakt's tweet which suppresses 75% of the truth?
                                      Reply
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                                        Chellam
                                        Jan 12, 2017 at 7:10 am
                                        Sushma is teaching a lesson in New Nationalism to America, Britain and Canada. India is leading the world into the 21st century.
                                        Reply
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                                          Chellam
                                          Jan 12, 2017 at 7:14 am
                                          When a bhakt tweets an order, she has to comply. That is the law.
                                          Reply
                                          1. C
                                            Chellam
                                            Jan 12, 2017 at 7:18 am
                                            When a dead body is wrapped in the tricolor, nobody is bothered!
                                            Reply
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