By Line: Aashish Vashistha
Recently, On February 5, a handle by the name Hyundai Pakistan Official shared a tweet which called for “remembering the sacrifices” of people in Kashmir. The tweet also urged people to stand in solidarity with these people as they continued to “struggle for freedom” from a very long period of time. The same post with the same appeal was also shared on Facebook by Hyundai Pakistan. Shortly, both the tweet and the Facebook post were deleted but it was picked by social media users who called out the company’s posts marking solidarity with Kashmir.
Pakistan observes February 5 as ‘Kashmir Solidarity Day’ with a view to show its support to the separatist movement of the Union territory. But when a post in favour of Pakistan regarding Kashmir went viral, it created a lot of outrage in India. Twitter India was full of hashtags asking for apologies and demanding permanent ban on purchasing anything from the South Korean Giant, Hyundai. After a lot of backlash, Hyundai India was compelled to issue a statement on this matter. A day after dealer of Hyundai in Pakistan shared a tweet providing solidarity with Kashmir, Hyundai India issued a statement in which they said, “The unsolicited social media post linking Hyundai Motor India is offending our unparalleled commitment and service to this great country. India is second home to the Hyundai brand and we have zero tolerance policy towards insensitive communication and we strongly condemn any such view.”
On Tuesday, February 6, In it’s statement released, Hyundai Motor India made it clear that it had been committed to the Indian market for more than 25 years and that it stood firmly behind the “strong ethos of respecting nationalism”. For your information, Hyundai is the second largest carmakers in India, after market leader Maruti Suzuki and is among the top exporters of cars from India. Such remarks from the company would definitely go against the national sentiments. #BoycottHyundai is still trending on twitter after the tweet on ‘Kashmir’ by Hyundai dealer went viral, resulting in social media storm faced by the company.
On Monday, February 7, Shivsena MP Priyanka Chaturvedi asked Hyundai in a tweet to avoid ‘wishy-washy’ words and just say ‘sorry’. She took to Twitter to write, “Hi Hyundai. So many wishy-washy words not needed. All you need to say is – we are unequivocally sorry. Rest is all unnecessary.” Hyundai India currently sells 12 models including Creta and Venue in the domestic market. Also, In December last year, the automaker announced plans to invest around ₹ 4,000 crore to drive in around six electric vehicles in India by 2028.