Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar Saturday opposed the central government's decision to allow 51 percent foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail and strongly demanded its withdrawal.
Sarkar, a Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) politburo member, categorically declared that his Left Front government in Tripura would not allow FDI.
"The Left Front government strongly opposes the decision of the UPA (United Progressive Alliance) government to allow 51 percent FDI in multi-brand retailing and demands that the central government should withdraw its decision henceforth," he told reporters.
"The Left parties, including CPI-M, have been always opposed the move and would continue to do so," the chief minister said.
Sarkar said that the UPA government, "through its various decisions, is trying to make India a junior partner of the US. All these decisions, including FDI, would only allow multi-national bodies and imperialist forces to loot India."
Terming the central government's decisions as undemocratic and unexpected, Sarkar questioned how an experienced prime minister like Manmohan Singh had taken such an extremely anti-people decision? "For who's interest, who's against, is the UPA working? Sarkar asked.
The chief minister feared that if a state government did not allow foreign retailing, they might enter that state through franchises.
"We believe true Indians would not allow the government to implement FDI-related decisions," Sarkar said.
"State-owned oil sector companies are making profits while the central government claims that they are losing money. Such a misinformation campaign is most unexpected from the government," he added.
Demanding a rollback of the diesel price hike, Sarkar said: "With the increase of the price of diesel, the cost of all kind of transports including railways will increase, putting severe pressure on the common man. It would deepen the crisis of agricultural sectors and the farmers. Irrigation facilities would also be affected by the diesel price hike."