Party to go in for direct action to ensure that no foreign retail chains come in

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) on Sunday pointed out that the political isolation of the United Progressive Alliance government was growing and declared that it would take all steps to isolate the government in Parliament. Towards this end, it was coordinating with Opposition parties to garner maximum support.

CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat said the government was undertaking measures to appease foreign finance capital and big businesses on the one hand and burden people with price rise and reduced subsidies on the other. The decision to allow foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail, disinvestments in profitable public sector enterprises, efforts to increase FDI in the insurance sector and privatise funds are all meant to profit foreign capital and big corporates.

“In the next session of Parliament, we will talk to other political parties to find effective ways to put the government in the dock,” Mr. Karat said.

Asked whether the CPI(M) would support a no-confidence motion, if brought about by the Trinamool Congress, he said, “We don't know what the TMC will do or will not do. But we will find an effective way to corner the government. We will work out appropriate tactics by which we can isolate the government.”

On the possibility of supporting the Bharatiya Janata Party in its effort to isolate the government, Mr. Karat said: “There are various ideas and proposals. Some parties have already talked to us. We will work out the right method. We are not ruling out anything. The withdrawal of the TMC from the government, even the partners of the UPA government differing with the anti-people measures adopted – all go to show that the Manmohan Singh government has no mandate to push through such reforms.” The UPA image is lowest today and virtually identifiable of high level corruption.

“The coal blocks allocation scandal, the CAG reports on Delhi airport and SASAN power project show how the government's policy framework is being used to loot public resources. The allegations against Robert Vadra also reflect the same nexus – the big real estate agents, the Haryana government and a person with high political connection. The business dealings of these companies should be investigated,” he said.

“His companies and their links with the giant real estate company, DLF, and the nexus with the Haryana government should be probed and action taken if there is any wrongdoing,” he stated.

Announcing the launch of a series of movements against price rise, corruption, food security and FDI in retail, he said the party would go in for direct action to ensure that no WalMart or other foreign retail chains came in.

Left parties would also resume the campaign on food security from December, apart from increases in the electricity rates and gas prices. “These callous measures will only further increase the burden on people. The UPA government is not bothered with the food inflation rate, which has crossed 10 per cent.” These measures had led to political isolation of the UPA government.

CPI to vote against FDI

Ananya Dutta reports from Kolkata

The Communist Party of India (CPI) will vote in favour of any motion that may be brought in Parliament against FDI, but the party is undecided on which way to vote if a no-confidence motion is brought against the UPA government at the Centre, party general secretary S. Sudhakar Reddy said here on Sunday.

“If a no-confidence motion is moved, they are not going to win. And if they are not going to win, the Congress will say that the Parliament has not endorsed its decisions on FDI in retail trade and other [economic reforms]. So we have to think about it,” Mr. Reddy told journalists, adding that the political strategy will have to be carefully worked out.

On being asked to comment on Trinamool Congress chairperson Mamata Banerjee announcement that her party can bring a no-confidence motion against the UPA government in the winter session of Parliament, Mr. Reddy said that it would be preferable if a motion against FDI in retail is moved.

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