Amendments to FEMA spell more trouble for UPA

The government may face fresh trouble in Parliament over the recent Reserve Bank of India (RBI) amendments in Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) to allow FDI in multi-brand retail, with the CPM on Tuesday saying these have to be voted within a time frame as laid down by law.

The statement by senior CPM leader Sitaram Yechury came on the fourth day of disruptions in Parliament over the FDI issue as he blamed the UPA government for the impasse saying it was not willing to have a vote on the issue.

Citing FEMA, he said the amendments carried out to permit FDI in retail has to be tabled in Parliament for voting.

While the RBI notified the amendments on October 30, section 48 of the FEMA Act says, once these amendments are made, they have to be placed before both the Houses of Parliament as soon as possible.

“The convention is that they should be placed before the 15th sitting of the first session after the amendments are made. That means by December 13,” Yechury said.

“Once the amendments are tabled they have to be disposed of through voting within 30 days. Government cannot escape from bringing an amendment. We do not know why they are not agreeing for a vote,” he said.

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