FDI in retail put on hold
Parliament Proceedings Resume
New Delhi, Dec 7: Deadlock over permitting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in retail finally ended with both Houses of Parliament transacting normal business after remaining paralysed for a fortnight. The impasse was broken after an all party meeting on Wednesday morning following which the Government agreed to put the proposal on hold till a consensus is worked out.
The meeting was chaired by Finance Minister and Leader of the House in Lok Sabha, Pranab Mukherjee. Later, he read out the brief resolution in the House which was earlier passed in the all party meeting.
The one paragraph statement read: “The decision to permit 51 percent FDI in retail trade is suspended till a consensus is developed through consultation among various stakeholders.” Mukherjee said.
He said all political parties have agreed and that as per the government’s latest formula, they would now consult all stakeholders, including the chief ministers of all states and political parties, before going ahead with the policy.
“The government will take a final decision on FDI in retail through consultation. Let the houses conduct normal business,” he appealed to the Opposition.
Keeping the acrimony of the past two weeks behind, Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj welcomed the decision and said it was not the defeat of the government “but it has strengthened democracy”. She complimented Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh and Finance Minister. “I thank the finance minister and the Prime Minister,” she observed.
Immediately after the all party meeting, the respective political parties claimed victory in Government’s decision to keep the FDI proposal on hold. Calling it “peoples’ victory”, the CPI claimed that the government has virtually revoked the FDI decision. “It is a virtual rollback. I compliment the government for taking the belated decision. It has retreated,” the party leader Gurudas Dasgupta said.
Trinamool Congress, which had vehemently opposed the FDI proposal despite being a ruling UPA ally, said every political party including the BJP, agreed to let Parliament function and put the FDI decision on hold. “It has been accepted. Whatever you may want to call it, holdback or rollback, it is not being implemented,” Trinamool Congress leader Sudip Bandhopadhyay said.
Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Rajiv Shukla dismissed the notion that the government has bowed before the opposition and its own allies, the Trinamool Congress and the DMK.
Lastupdate on : Tue, 6 Dec 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Tue, 6 Dec 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Wed, 7 Dec 2011 00:00:00 IST
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