In the past decade, Kashmir has seen an explosion in the number of foreign-made goods entering the area.
As the Indian army and the government have fought a war in the Himalayan territory for decades, the Kashmiris have become increasingly sensitive to the presence of foreign goods.
In recent months, locals in the Kashmir Valley have been calling on the Indian government to impose restrictions on imports from China and other countries.
The demand was echoed by some Indian citizens who claimed that the new restrictions are being pushed by China.
The growing tensions have triggered a debate on whether the Kashmiri people are being duped by the Indian authorities and whether the ban on imports of certain products is justified.
This week, a Chinese company, Lianhe, announced that it would be opening a fruit and vegetable market in the area of Kargil in April 2019.
It will sell fruit, vegetables and pulses and offer prices between Rs 2,000 and Rs 2.5 lakh a kg.
In a recent letter to the Ministry of Agriculture, the company wrote, “Our goal is to bring a new generation of farmers and farmers’ markets in Kargile, and we hope to make a huge impact by opening our market in April.”
The company, however, did not specify the reason for the decision, nor any plans to bring the fruit and vegetables to the Valley.
A senior government official said that the Chinese company has not asked for any permission from the local authorities in the region and it has not requested permission from any other entity.
Kargil is one of the most fertile and productive regions of India, and the region produces a lot of fruit and produce, the official said.
In 2016, the local population had an estimated consumption of 2.2 million tonnes of fruits and vegetables.
The Indian government has taken a series of measures to ensure the smooth flow of goods into the Valley, including allowing the Indian border guards to check the movements of goods across the border.
But the issue of Chinese goods entering Kashmir has sparked controversy among the Kashmir residents, who claim that the move is meant to divert attention from the ongoing armed conflict in the valley.
The Kashmiri residents have also alleged that the Indian soldiers who have been stationed at the border have used force and are indiscriminately shooting at people and killing civilians.
In the recent past, the people have also called for the introduction of a special status for Kashmiri farmers.
“The people of Kalinga have demanded a special category for Kashmiris, as they are the most affected by the ongoing war in Kashmir,” said an Indian-Kashmiri resident of Kheli, who asked not to be named.