'Govt. approved FDI in retail under pressure of foreign elements': BJP

   Sep 14, 7:59 pm

New Delhi, Sep 14 (ANI): Charging the Congress-led UPA Government of taking the decision to approve Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail under pressure of foreign elements, senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Ravi Shankar Prasad on Friday said this would very seriously impact upon the future and prospects of nearly five crore people of India who are dependent on the retail sector.

Prasad said the hurried manner in which FDI in retail has been decided by the Cabinet today is deeply unfortunate, regrettable and condemnable.

"This decision has been taken under pressure of foreign elements, which would very seriously impact upon the future and prospects of nearly five crore people of India who are dependent or the retail sector, in small grocery shops which have been nurturing the Indian economy at the village level, at the 'mufasil' level and also at the 'mohalla' level in various urban centres," said Prasad.

"Therefore, without any corresponding gain to India in terms of movement of human resources, they are still suffering the problem of outsourcing in Europe, in America and in many countries. Yet, without any corresponding commitment by authorities or considerations from the foreign countries, Dr. Manmohan Singh's Government has succumbed to the pressure, which would seriously impinge upon the employment potential and earning potential of small retailers and traders all over India," he added, while emphasizing that the BJP shall continue to oppose this.

The Union Cabinet earlier today decided to operationalise 51 percent FDI in multi-brand retail, but left it to the state governments to allow setting up of such stores.

The decision in this regard was taken at a meeting headed by Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh here this evening.

The government had in November last year approved 51 percent FDI in multi-brand. This was, however, put on hold due to political opposition, including from UPA constituent Trinamool Congress.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who has 16 Lok Sabha MPs and is the second-largest member of the ruling UPA coalition, has so far opposed the FDI in key sectors like retail, insurance and aviation.

She had earlier claimed that FDI in these sectors would be harmful for the people of the country. (ANI)

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