FDI issue: Opposition suffering from selective loss of memory, says Anand Sharma

Last Updated: Tue, Nov 20, 2012 17:10 hrs

Accusing the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the larger National Democratic Alliance (NDA) of passing unfair comments and suffering from a selective loss of memory with regard to the issue of allowing foreign direct investment in the multi-brand retail sector, Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma on Tuesday said he was really surprised by the former's contention that the UPA-II Government had not tabled notifications related to FDI in Parliament.

Interacting with media onboard Air India One while accompanying Prime Minister Manmohan singh back home from Cambodian capital Phnom Penh, where they had gone to attend the 10th ASEAN-India and the Seventh East Asia Summits, Sharma said: ""With regard to notifications , they have to be placed in parliament. I'm really surprised if our political opponents have gone that far to say that the government has not tabled them.""

""This is an unfair comment (to make) and, the opposition has either not done the home work, or suferrs from a selective loss of memory in furtherence of (their) partisan agenda,"" claimed Sharma.

"The FEMA Act makes it abundantly clear, and when it comes to that, if there is any view to be expressed, there are processes which are made amply clear in the act itself. Executive decisions are never voted on in parliament unless and until legislative change is required. In the case of this decison, the guidelines and the act are different,"" claimed Sharma.

Sharma's comment came even as the NDA revealed this evening after a meeting at senior BJP leader L.K.Advani's residence, that it will move a voting motion in Parliament against FDI in retail.

Senior BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad told media in New Delhi that the opposition will also explore the possibility of moving a no-trust motion against the government.

Earlier in the day, the executive committee of the BJP's parliamentary body met to deliberate on the no-trust motion in the upcoming Winter Session of Parliament that begins on November 22 against the UPA government.

The Trinamool Congress, a one-time ally of the UPA, has proposed a no-confidence motion against the UPA government on the issue of allowing FDI in the retail sector.

On Tuesday, the BJP parliamentary board met under the chairmanship of LK Advani to look at the party's strategy in Parliament.

AIADMK, DMK likely to oppose UPA on FDI

Meanwhile, the sources said that the AIADMK led by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa might vote in favour of a no-confidence motion against the UPA government.

AIADMK sources said the party MPs, who have been opposing the FDI move, might agree on supporting the no-confidence motion proposed to be moved by the Trinamool Congress.

Key UPA constituent-the DMK, which is led by former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi last night said that it will not support the Centre's decision to allow foreign investment in the retail sector.

DMK had recently refused to clarify its stand on the decision to allow FDI in multi-brand retail.

The Congress, however, has expressed confidence that the UPA Government will prove its majority in Lok Sabha if a no-confidence motion is brought or any other resolution on FDI in retail issue taken up under a rule entailing voting.

"We are fully confident of numbers and will prove majority on the floor of Lok Sabha when ever any such motion comes. We have more than 272," party spokesperson Sandip Dikshit told reporters on Monday.

At the same time, he insisted government has no plan to seek a confidence vote on the issue as it had done during the UPA I on the issue of Indo-US nuclear deal in 2008 when Left parties had withdrawn support from it.

Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari said, "We hope Mamata Banerjee will reconsider her decision about bringing no-confidence motion against the government."

He also said that it has never happened that a party with 19 members has sought to move a no-confidence motion. (ANI)

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