Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat on Thursday said using “swadeshi” or indigenous items does not necessarily mean boycotting all foreign products, PTI reported. He also emphasised on the need to only import the materials and technology that are not available in India.

Swadeshi means preferring and promoting indigenous products and technologies while not boycotting all foreign items, the RSS chief said at a virtual book launch event.

“We will import whatever is suitable for us,” he said, according to ANI.

The RSS chief said that we should think of the world “as one family and not one market” and stressed on the requirement of mutual cooperation among self-reliant nations, especially in the post-Covid world.

Bhagwat backed the Narendra Modi government’s decision for making India self-reliant and suggested that the coronavirus pandemic has shown globalisation did not yield positive results. One economic model is not applicable everywhere, he added.

Policies in India, after the Independence, were influenced by the West, he said, adding this resulted in foreign products being preferred to indigenous products.

The RSS chief also praised the new National Education Policy and said it was “a step in the right direction” for making the nation self-reliant. These policies will help the nation in understanding the potential and wisdom of its own people, he said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had in May announced a Rs 20 lakh-crore financial package to tide over the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic and called for a self-reliant India based on the five crucial pillars of economy, infrastructure, system, demography and demand.

On August 9, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh had announced that the Centre will impose an embargo on the import of 101 military items “beyond a given timeline” to promote indigenisation in the defence sector, in line with the vision to make the Indian economy self-reliant amid the coronavirus crisis.