Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Govt puts FDI decision on hold


Share post:


Kolkata/New Delhi: Under relentless pressure from allies and Opposition, the Government on Saturday put on hold its controversial decision to allow FDI in retail in a bid to end the stalemate in Parliament.

The announcement surprisingly made by West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee after a telephonic talk with Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, who himself declined to speak on the subject saying any official word on this will be made only in Parliament.

Banerjee, whose party is strongly opposed to the decision, revealed that Mukherjee told her that the FDI decision has been “suspended”.

“It is not temporary…until and unless consensus is evolved, the issue (decision on FDI in retail) is suspended,” she told reporters in Kolkata.

“Pranabda sought our opinion on the issue and we told him that the Trinamool Congress remains firm. He informed me that the cabinet decision on FDI entry in retail will be suspended until and unless a consensus is evolved,” Banerjee said.

“If that is so, the issue is settled,” she said. “The matter is crystal clear and you may ask Pranab Mukherjee,” the chief minister added.

Mukherjee, who was in Kolkata on Saturday and visited the ailing mother of the Chief Minister at a local hospital, later said: “I cannot announce anything because Parliament is in session. Any government decision will be made in Parliament.”

“I talked to her twice, but officially I can’t make any announcement as Parliament is in session,” he told reporters at his residence.

Along with Opposition, TC and DMK, which have 18 members each in Lok Sabha, have strongly opposed the FDI decision and demanded its rollback.

The two allies, however, made it clear that they were not for toppling the government.

In Delhi, Opposition BJP and CPI, however, asked the government to clarify its stand on the issue by making a formal announcement. Parliament will reconvene on Wednesday after the long week-end recess.

The Congress reacted, saying it welcomed all meaningful steps to break the stalemate over FDI.

“In such a situation, a broad consensus is required among different stakeholders,” party General Secretary Janardhan Dwivedi said.

For the last one week Parliament had been stalled by a united Opposition demanding rollback of the FDI decision and no business was transacted by the two Houses. Banerjee said that the Finance Minister tried to contact her several times. Later, he asked her how to thrash out a solution to the FDI issue. “I too was preoccupied. But I talked to him over phone twice and during the short period, I consulted senior leaders of my party,” she said. Banerjee said she spoke over telephone with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh yesterday when he had requested her to reconsider her party’s stand on the issue. “I also assured him that Trinamool Congress does not want to topple the government. But at the same time, we are not in favour of FDI in the retail sector,” she said


Related articles

Netanyahu dissolves Israeli War Cabinet

Tel Aviv, June 17: Israeli officials said on Monday that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has dissolved the influential...

Ronaldo on verge of Euro record

Leipzig, June 17: Cristiano Ronaldo can become the first player to feature at six European Championships when Portugal...

SL beat the Dutch in last group game

Gros Islet (Saint Lucia), June 17: Sri Lanka finally found their mojo as they clinically disposed off the...

Pandya, Pant biggest positives for India in T20 WC: Harbhajan

New Delhi, June 17: Lauding India’s group stage performance in the T20 World Cup, former off-spinner Harbhajan Singh...