Kolkata: Social activist Arvind Kejriwal who recently launched the Aam Aadmi party on Saturday demanded a referendum on FDI in retail.
"All of us have seen how political parties behaved in Parliament during a debate on FDI in retail. I think the issue should be brought under a referendum," Kejriwal told reporters on the sidelines of the panIIT conference here.
He alleged "by armtwisting the BSP and SP with the CBI handle, the government has been able to win the vote in both the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha two days back. The other point is that the issue was also not debated properly in Parliament," he said.
Kejriwal said that the government was putting across the theory that FDI in retail would help the farmers and eliminate middlemen.
"The Walmart experience shows that farmers in the US were not benefitted, but deprived besides being a very bad employer," he said.
"The government is also saying that Walmart and others will also set up cold storages. If the government could not do this for the last 65 years, is it right to believe that foreign companies will come and do this in a few years?" he asked.
"Even the theory that middlemen will be eliminated is rubbish," he said.