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Retail FDI: Mamata Sets 72-hour Deadline

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Strongly opposing the major reforms announced by the Centre, key UPA constituent Trinamool Congress on 14 September set a 72-hour deadline to government to withdraw decision on multi-brand retail and diesel price hike.

The party has decided to convene an urgent meeting on the issue on 18 September to "take a tough decision" after the Centre's decision to allow 51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail and hike of Rs 5 in diesel price.

The TMC Parliamentary Party will meet on Tuesday, party leader and Railway Minister Mukul Roy said in Kolkata.

"A tough decision will be taken," he said.

Read: Govt Has Its Big Bang Moment, Allows 51% In Multibrand Retail
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Read: Broadcast Sector Reform: FDI Up To 74% To Be AllowedRead: Govt Bites The Bullet, Hikes Diesel Price By Rs 5

He said the party was opposed to allowing FDI in multi-brand retail, a decision regarding which was taken by the Union Cabinet at a meeting in which he was not present.

"I came to know about the decision of the Cabinet to allow FDI in multi-brand retail... We are opposed to FDI and we will oppose," Roy said.

His party colleague and MP Kunal Ghose said, "Trinamool Congress is strongly opposing the cabinet decision to allow FDI in multi-brand retail. We are not in agreement with the decision.

He said "Trinamool Congress is registering its strong protest, but the Congress-led government at the Centre is taking anti-people policies."

UPA's outside supporter JD(S) also was angry at the government's decision on multi-brand retail, terming it as "anti-people" and threatening to withdraw its outside support for the central government.

Senior JD(S) leader Danish Ali said the National Executive of the party, which has three MPs in Lok Sabha, will meet soon to "review" the support given to the UPA government from outside.

BJP also attacked the government, saying the "hurried" decision had been taken under foreign pressure and it will affect the livelihood of five crore Indians involved in retail trade.