In a massive setback for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Congress-led UPA Government won the vote on foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail in the Rajya Sabha on Friday afternoon after nearly two days of debate.
The voting took place under Rule 168 of the Rules of Business of the Rajya Sabha.
The government, which required the majority mark to 118, got 123 votes in its favour compared to 109 for the motion moved by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
Members of Parliament of the Samajwadi Party (SP) walked out of the Rajya Sabha minutes before the voting on FDI. Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) voted for the government on the FDI issue.
The government had earlier on Wednesday evening won the FDI vote in the Lok Sabha by a margin of 253 votes to 218 votes late.
Asserting that the Centre has done extensive consultations on the FDI issue, Union Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma while replying to the debate in the Rajya Sabha earlier this morning said ' the chief ministers of 14 states including Punjab, West Bengal and Bihar were consulted on this issue'.
Rubbishing apprehensions that small traders will be affected by the FDI move, Sharma said that this would lead to more employment generation in cities and villages alike.
He also refuted the allegation that he had violated the assurance given to Parliament on December 7 last year that decision on FDI was suspended until there was a consensus among the stakeholders.
Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley, however, said the Commerce Minister never wrote a letter to the opposition after December 7.
Communist Party if India (CPI) MP D. Raja speaking on the FDI issue said that his party disapproves the Government's decision.
Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) chief Ram Vilas Paswan backed the government's decision, and said that it will help in bringing down inflation. (ANI)