Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit today justified union cabinet's decision to allow 51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail sector, saying it will help stakeholders like farmers and consumers, besides help contain inflation.
"We welcome the decision of the union cabinet. It will help both farmers and consumers besides bringing new technology. Opening up of retail stores (by MNCs) will also ensure uniform prices for various agricultural produces," she said, adding vegetables prices vary from areas-to-areas across the city.
Dikshit said the proposed move will help contain inflation and it will go a long way in generation of lakhs of employment opportunities across the country.
She said currently 30-40 per cent of the vegetables and fruits go waste due to lack of cold storage facilities and allowing FDI in retail will bring in technology that will help in preserving the perishable items.
"If we can preserve the perishable items from rotting, then it will also reflect on the prices. The price will definitely come down," she said adding "no small trader has been affected because of opening of the malls."
Rejecting BJP's contention that small traders will be badly hit, she said coming up of around 20 malls, the business of small traders have not been affected.
BJP today forced adjourment of the first day's proceedings of Delhi Assembly demanding an assurance from Dikshit that FDI in retail will not be implemented in the city.
"It is a well-thought decision which will take farmers out of the fluctuating situation and ensure them the best remunerative prices of their products. It will facilitate the common man in getting essential commodities at much lower rates.
"The farmers will also be ensured of getting good quality seeds apart from a secured assurance on bulk purchase of their products for years together by the companies associated with FDI. It will also ensure that the items will not perish due to non availability of air-conditioned storage," she said.
Meanwhile, BJP workers took out a 'Padyatra' in Chandni Chowk and some other markets to protest move to allow FDI in retail.
The BJP workers also staged demonstrations in Connaught Place, Sadar Bazar, Karol Bagh, Kamla Nagar, Darya Ganj, Lajpat Nagar, Sarojini Nagar, Moti Nagar, Pankha Road, Rajender Nagar, Tri Nagar, Rohini, Dwarka, Najafgarh, Vikas Marg, Shahdara, Mayur Vihar, Ashok Vihar, Preet Vihar, Pitampura.
A section of traders are expected to shut their shops tomorrow as part of an all India bandh called to protest the decision.
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