The CPI(M) on Saturday opposed the move to allow foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail trade and called upon political parties and organisations to protest against this retrograde move.

The CPI(M) Polit Bureau, in a statement, opposed the suggestion by the Inter-Ministerial Group on Inflation headed by the Chief Economic Adviser and said it was perpetration of yet another instance of pro-MNC neo-liberal framework which would badly affect Indians.

It accused the government of utilising its failures to curb inflation as a ploy to push for more concessions to multinational companies such as Walmart.

The Polit Bureau said the government had utterly failed to curb the relentless increase in prices of essential commodities and now it had started arguing that entry of MNC retail giants such as Walmart would enhance efficiency of the supply chain and bring down the trading margins.

This claim belied international experience of state regulations of these giant retail chains being always rendered ineffective.

The CPI(M) warned that the MNCs would enjoy much greater monopoly power over both farmers and consumers and would manipulate prices to their benefit while at the same time the livelihood of millions of small unorganised retailers would be virtually wiped out.

The Polit Bureau expressed shock at the refusal of the Group of Ministers to accept Supreme Court directive to strengthen the public distribution system and distribute foodgrains to the people which was also one of the ways of controlling market prices.