On the banks of the Indian river, there’s a mango farm.
And on a busy stretch of the riverfront, there are hundreds of mango vendors selling their wares.
On Wednesday, the Indian government announced it had banned the sale of mango clothing, including women’s and children’s clothing, at malls, restaurants and other public places.
The move follows the Supreme Court’s ruling in July that the government must ban such clothing and that it must allow free and fair elections for local politicians.
“Banning mangoes is not about politics.
It’s about our rights as human beings,” said Abhishek Dasgupta, the deputy general secretary of the Union of Mango Traders, a trade group.
“It’s about the rights of the women and children.
There is a lot of misinformation in the media.
The ban is against the spirit of India.”
While the ban was welcomed by trade unions and women’s groups, they also expressed concerns about the impact on the economy, jobs and public health.
The mango industry employs tens of thousands of people in the country, according to the National Indian Fruits and Vegetables Association.
But the ban will make it difficult to compete with the booming clothing industry, said Manoj Sharma, a mango vendor at a mango-growing centre in the Indian city of New Delhi.
“This is an economic hit for us,” he said.
A ban would also affect the country’s largest exporter, Australia, which imports about half of India’s mango exports, according the Australian Government.
The ban comes just days after a group of Chinese expatriates, including a top state-run media executive, filed a complaint with the World Trade Organisation alleging that the country is violating WTO rules by banning imports of mangoes.
The WTO has yet to respond.
“We have a duty to provide quality goods, and our products are not doing that,” Agriculture Minister Gyanendra Kumar said in an interview on Indian television.
“We will not be able to compete on price.
We will be forced to go with cheaper products.
We are very concerned.”
The WTO, which is not directly affected by the Indian ban, has not yet made a decision on whether it will file an objection against the ban.
But trade unions are concerned that the ban could hurt farmers, who are the main consumers of mango and other fruits in India.
They have urged the government to clarify the ban and ensure it applies to all mango-producing areas, including the most remote areas.
“Mango farmers have been living in this kind of hell for years, and we are here now, so let’s get our voices heard,” said Sanjay Singh, secretary general of the Federation of Migrant Farm Workers, a federation representing migrant farm workers.