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FDI in retail sector has traders up in arms

Staff Reporter
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Slogans raised against Centre demanding withdrawal of FDI policy

AGITATION:The Members of All Traders Association staging demonstration in Tuticorin on Wednesday.— Photo: N. Rajesh
AGITATION:The Members of All Traders Association staging demonstration in Tuticorin on Wednesday.— Photo: N. Rajesh

Condemning the Central government’s move to allow 51 percent Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the multi brand retail sector, traders staged an agitation near the old corporation office on WGC road here on Wednesday.

Tradesmen led by A. M. Vikramaraja, state president, Tamil Nadu Traders Association, raised slogans against the Centre demanding the withdrawal of the FDI policy.

Criticising the Members of Parliament, who voted in favour of FDI , A. M. Vikramaraja said the agitators would lay siege to the MPs’ houses, soon. The MPs were bribed to vote for the FDI in India, he charged and added that the traders had also identified a political party, which betrayed them.

Livelihoods of many traders would be adversely affected if the FDI was allowed, he added.

Majority of traders had closed their shops in various districts to register protest against the FDI and protest demonstrations were being organized in a phased manner, which would continue. Not only traders, but the government has also failed to protect interests of famers, who would also suffer, he pointed out. Meanwhile, Mr. Vikramaraja said all out efforts would be made against the government’s move to establish the USA-based Walmart Company in India. Urging the Central government to revoke the Food Safety Standards Act, he said that many small traders cannot afford the heavy penalties imposed by the Act.

The agitators also took out a rally through various streets. Many shops in Kovilpatti and its suburbs remained closed to show their protest.

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