BJP-ruled civic body will not allow FDI in retail

The BJP-ruled East Delhi Municipal Corporation has decided not to issue trade licence to any foreign company. The move comes as a direct confrontation with the Centre and the city government over foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail.

Though the city government has allowed foreign companies to invest in retail, BJP leaders said they won’t allow them to open their stores in east Delhi as it is the mandate of the civic body to issue trade licence.

“Taking into consideration sentiments of the common man and retail traders, the East Corporation won’t issue trade licence to any foreign company,” said EDMC mayor Annapurna Mishra at a public meeting.

She said the aim of the meeting was to understand the viewpoint of traders and formulate a policy over the issue.

“If required we will amend the policy of issuing trade licences. We will bring a resolution to that effect in the next meeting of the standing committee,” said standing committee chairperson Mahak Singh.

Hundreds of traders from east Delhi attended the meeting and expressed willingness to fight against the Centre’s decision. “The government has come up with several policies for big industries and other sectors, but has never come up with a policy to promote the retail sector,” said Praveen Khandelwal, secretary of Confederation of All-India Traders.

“Just to extend benefits to a selected few, the government is destroying a well-developed industry that has been developed by sheer hardwork and personal investment by small-time traders,” he said.

Traders say the decision will result in job loss.

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