BJP states may block FDI in retail

BJP states may block FDI in retail

The party also extended its full support to an all-India strike called by trade and social organisation on December 1 in protest against the decision to allow FDI in retail sector.

In a statement issued here, BJP President Nitin Gadkari said "BJP-ruled states are not bound to follow the government's new norms on allowing Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail trading and ease norms in single-brand retail."

The party has vehemently opposed the government's decision to allow 51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail, alleging this would adversely impact the small and family-run retail businesses across the country. This group has been traditionally seen as backing BJP.

"India would lose both manufacturing and services sector jobs with the entry of global retail behemoths into the supermarket sector," Gadkari said.

He said "my party is extending wholehearted and unequivocal support to the call for a Bharat Bandh on December 1, 2011, given by various traders associations and social organizations across the country against the government's anti-people decision," Gadkari said.

He charged the decision would adversely impact the retail sector and put the nation's entire food chain system into the hands of foreign firms.

Gadkari termed the government decision as a "lopsided move (taken) without consulting even its UPA allies" and alleged it is against the interests of the country's millions of traders and farmers.

The all-India strike against FDI in retail has been called by organisations, including Confederation of Traders Association, Udyog Vyapar Mandal, Swadeshi Jagran Manch and Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh.

"My party would oppose the government's decision tooth and nail and would urge other opposition parties and UPA allies to join the bandh organized by various traders' organizations," Gadkari said.

He announced BJP will stand by the large section of small and tiny retailers and farmers across the country and oppose government's effort both inside and outside parliament.

The Indian economy is dominated by the services sector with 58 percent of India's GDP coming from it.

"The retail chains in India, both small and big, account for a major segment of the services sector. Self-employment in India is the single largest source of jobs. An overwhelming section of India's population is self-employed," Gadkari said.

Foreign firms "with deep pockets entering this segment will have an adverse impact on our domestic retail sector, which is growing", he added.

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