Invite FDI to build roads instead, says Akhilesh Yadav
Both CM and former CM Mayawati oppose govt’s decision to allow foreign investment in retail sector
Virendra Nath Bhatt
UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati opposed the FDI in retail announced by the Centre on Friday.
“UP government will never allow FDI in retail sector. The decision on continuing the support to the UPA government will be taken by the national leadership of the party’’, said Akhilesh Yadav on Saturday 15 September.
“Our stand is very clear on the issue of FDI in retail and we will not implement it in the state. If the UPA is so keen on FDI then it should invite foreign investment in infrastructure sector like power, roads and highways’’, the CM added.
Yadav announced that with effect from April 1 2012, farmers will be given free irrigation facility from the canal network and tube wells. Asked whether his government has received proposal from other retail companies for investment in the state CM said, “There were courtesy calls for investment in different sectors. They wanted our cooperation in investing in state and except retail sector all are welcome”.
Condemning the hike in prices of the diesel and LPG cylinder, former UP chief minister Mayawati criticised the UPA government for allowing FDI in retail. Mayawati said, “The FDI in multi-brand retail would ruin the small industry and millions of small traders and shopkeepers will be thrown out of the business”.
“In the past two days, the UPA government has taken series of anti-people decisions. BSP demands immediate roll back of the hike in price of diesel and LPG and also the FDI in retail. The party will decide about continuing support to the UPA government on 9 October during the ‘Maharally’ in Lucknow”.
Meanwhile, Mayawati dismissed the last six months of the SP government as total failure. “The SP government does not deserve zero on performance as the law and order situation has deteriorated and the atrocities on the Dalits and weaker sections of society have increased’’.
Dismissing the opposition by BSP to the FDI in retail as an eye-wash, UP chief minister said, “It was the previous Mayawati-led BSP government which had allowed the FDI in retail sector as it had permitted the opening of Walmart store in Lucknow and other places in UP.’’ He added, “We will see what can be done with the stores already opened.’’
Virendra Nath Bhatt is a Special Correspondent with Tehelka.