Mass resignations have been tendered by the employees of food delivery app Zomato in Kolkata, in protest of the company’s links with China. Over a dozen delivery personnel previously associated with Zomato tendered their resignations, and as a mark of protest, burnt their uniforms in front of the Behala Police Station in South Kolkata. The protestors even raised anti-China and anti-Zomato slogans like “Chinese agent Zomato leave India!”
“Zomato has tied up with Chinese company Alibaba to run its operations. Today we have quit Zomato and we hope consumers will also boycott this company,” Dipankar Kanjilal, one of the protesters told India Today. The protestors also added that they were willing to go hungry for the nation but were not inclined to work for a company with Chinese investments any longer.
“Chinese companies are making profit from here and attacking the Army of our country. They are trying to grab our land. This cannot be allowed,” another protester said. The former employees of the food delivery major also called upon people to boycott Zomato and not order food from the same.
While people are losing jobs all around, a group of #Zomato delivery boys in #Kolkata quit their job protesting against #Chinese investment in the company #IndiaChinaFaceOff #BoycottChineseProduct #BoycottMadeInChina pic.twitter.com/I0R6heusZO
— Indrajit | ইন্দ্রজিৎ (@iindrojit) June 27, 2020
Ant Financial, which is affiliated to Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding has investments in Zomato. In 2018, Ant Financial had invested USD 210 million in Zomato for a 14.7% stake in the Indian company. Only recently, the app raised an additional USD 150 million from Ant Financial. The company was founded as a start-up company by Pankaj Chaddah and Deepinder Goyal in 2008, and is headquartered in Gurugram, Haryana.
The protest against Zomato comes in the backdrop of the PLA killing 20 Indian soldiers during the violent June 15 clash in the Galwan valley region. Ever since the same came to light, there has been unprecedented public fury against China, and there have been calls from various quarters to boycott, and even ban Chinese products in the country. As a result of the same, companies like Redmi and Xiaomi have increasingly been trying to ‘Indianise’ themselves, to insulate their interests from public ire.
Chinese companies have been running from pillar to post in order to somehow escape the economic impact which is about to follow following heightened tensions between India and China. The protest by employees of Zomato in Kolkata shows that hitting China where it hurts them the most will not be that difficult for Indians. If Indian companies with Chinese investments are not being spared, it is soon going to be hell for hardcore Chinese companies.