Odisha wants rollback of FDI decision

Bhubaneswar, Nov 28 (IANS) Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Monday criticised the central government for not consulting states before allowing foreign equity in the retail sector and demanded that it be withdrawn immediately.

‘In a federal country like ours, the union government should not have taken such a major policy decision without adequate consultation with the state governments,’ Patnaik said in a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

‘You will no doubt agree with me that the biggest challenge facing the country today is the persistent double digit inflation which is adversely impacting the life of the common man,’ Patnaik wrote in the letter he sent Monday.

‘Instead of taking immediate steps to tackle this problem, the central government has now allowed FDI in a sector which provides employment to a major section of the workforce of the country,’ he wrote.

‘This move will only favour the large multinational corporations which will have monopoly over trade in this country,’ he stated.

‘Instead of that, the government should have strengthened the marketing opportunities for farmers and small-scale manufacturers. In our considered view this policy is ill advised and highly regressive. I would, therefore, earnestly request you to reconsider the matter and withdraw this policy immediately,’ he wrote.

India Thursday allowed global chains like Wal-Mart, Carrefour and 7-Eleven to bring up to 51 percent foreign equity to open multi-brand retail stores and allowed 100-percent equity in single brand format.