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The bitter, sweet memories of FDI and BJP
"Itni na barha paki e daman ki hikayat daman ko zara dekh zara band e qaba dekh." Don't exaggerate that height the parables of you chastity and probity, watch the slip of your shirt, check the string of your tunic.

There were times when the RSS juggernaut had vehemently protested the UPA's decision to open Indian economy to Foreign Direct Investment (FDI). Senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Uma Bharti, in September 2012, during the UPA regime had threatened to burn down the first shop that will be set up using investments from Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail.

"I am determined to burn down the first shop that comes up after the agreement and also ready to go to jail, I'm challenging the economy of foreign companies. India is capable of growing... We do need additional support but not with everything."

BJP was leading among the several opposition parties who have opposed the introduction of FDI in multi-brand retail and increase in diesel prices calling for a nationwide bandh on September 20, 2012.

And giving a turtle turn to all those moral, economic and political planks, the Modi government on Monday took a radical step to relax Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) norms in a host of sectors including civil aviation, single-brand retail, defence and pharma by permitting more investments under automatic route.

During UPA rule in 2013, while addressing a rally held at Ramlila Ground in New Delhi by the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT), an angry Arun Jaitley, now the Union Finance Minister had assured the traders that his party would oppose the move till its "last breath."

He had assured the nation that FDI is not in favour of the consumers, farmers, traders, manufacturers and the country. That's why we are opposing it and will continue to oppose it till our last breath. We stand united with the traders and the people of this country." The fudge over the political pudding was in the presence of the then BJP chief (now Home Minister) Rajnath Singh, senior BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi.

From the dais, Shri Jaitley had enlightened that under FDI, 60-70% of the business will go into the hands of just two or three companies which will be harmful for the farmers. "The farmers would be left with no choice but to sell their produce to them. When the number of sellers decrease, how will it benefit the farmers?"

On March 2, 2014, in 'Merinews' this scribe had taken up the issue and I'm quoting some of the excerpts of that article to keep the momentum of the article.

For the readers, I am reproducing from a BJP booklet its official position in past about FDI.

The decision of the Congress-led UPA government to allow FDI in multi-brand retail has drawn all round criticism and condemnation. In the name of 'reform', the government has in fact compromised the long-term national interest, which is sure to have far reaching implications on our economy.

It will not be wrong to say that in order to show that the government is not in the grip of policy paralysis, the Congress-led UPA has buckled under foreign pressure. The decision is sure to have its impact on millions of small traders who are going to lose their jobs. At the same time the manufacturing sector will also be hurt creating a new economic crisis in the country.

It is very unfortunate to see that the Congress-led UPA neither bothered to contact its coalition partners on the issue nor took Opposition into confidence. BJP has opposed FDI in multi-brand retail right from the beginning.

On November 24, 2011 when the cabinet approved the proposal for the first time, Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj and Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley in a joint statement opposed the move. The decision was then deferred by the government.

There is a need to create awareness among the people on the issue as this decision might change the very contours of the Indian economy. We are publishing various documents, articles and relevant papers on the issue so that the people are aware of the facts and voice their concerns forcefully. We hope that the booklet will help in highlighting various aspects of the issue.


Bharatiya Janata Party

11, Ashoka Road, New Delhi - 110003 End of the quote.

Another pearl of his wisdom from the leader of BJP about the laurel of traders: "risk taking ability of traders was more than that of a soldier."

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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