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BJP firm on voting on retail FDI in Winter Session: Spokesman

Posted on Nov 23, 05:56PM | UNI

The BJP today reiterated its demand for a discussion and voting under Rule 184 on foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail sector in the Winter Session of Parliament which was disrupted for the second consecutive day, a spokesman said.

The BJP stressed that the only way it will allow Parliament to function is if the Congress-led UPA government agrees to discuss the decision to allow 51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail under Rule 184, which entails a vote.

However, the government has been maintaining that an executive decision does not need Parliament's approval and it was ready to discuss the issue, but it does not want a vote.

The all-party meeting to break the logjam is scheduled for Monday but it seems that it will also not be able to break the deadlock as the BJP has made it clear that it would attend the meeting with their demand for voting on FDI.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's dinner invite to senior BJP leaders yesterday, to attempt to end the political logjam in Parliament, appeared to be 'failed'.

The Prime Minister had hosted dinner for BJP veteran L K Advani and Leaders of Opposition in Parliament Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley at his 7 Race Course Road residence.

The government's decision to allow FDI in multi-brand retail disrupted the proceedings of the Lok Sabha for the second consecutive day of its Winter Session.

The BJP has been alleging that the UPA had violated the promise made in Parliament last December that all stakeholders, including political parties, would be consulted before a decision was taken on the FDI issue.

"We stick to our demand for discussion and voting on FDI under Rule 184. Our stand will not change in the all-party meeting. The government has insulted Parliament," BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain told reporters at Parliament premises.

He said the BJP also wants to break the deadlock on FDI issue but "the ball is now in the government's court".