Muktsar (Punjab): Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal said on Friday that SAD will vote against the UPA government's decision to introduce FDI in retail as the move is aimed at benefiting the MNCs and ruining the petty traders and distressed farmers in a "clandestine" manner.

"The move of opening multi-brand retail for foreign investment is aimed at benefiting the MNCs and ruining the petty traders and distressed farmers in a clandestine manner," Badal said.

"The Shiromani Akali Dal will vote against it," Badal told reporters on the sidelines of a function in Lambi Assembly area. The Chief Minister reiterated the commitment of SAD saying they would oppose the "anti-trader and anti-farmer" move of the Union government, "tooth and nail".

Badal said the SAD could not remain a mute spectator to the Centre's move, which is aimed at benefiting the MNCs. Terming the step of the Union government as "unfortunate and suicidal", Badal said, like the East India Company which not only plundered our economy but also decayed the indigenous industry, the MNCs too would do the same.

Without mincing any words, the chief minister said the Congress-led UPA government was all set to "repeat the same folly" as done nearly 300 years back, and it would entirely decimate the petty shopkeepers, small traders and local establishments.
"We are well aware of the harsh consequences of this pro-rich and anti-poor stance at the behest of MNCs and will oppose this step till our last breath within the democratic norms," he said. The chief minister described former prime minister I K Gujral as an "illustrious son of soil", and said he had rendered enormous contribution in ensuring overall development and prosperity of Punjab, for which the Punjabis would remain indebted to him.

When asked about the controversy surrounding Sunil Jakhar, Leader of Opposition in Punjab Assembly, over allocation of a house and also the alleged illegal occupancy of a government house by the former chief minister Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, Badal said, "the law would take its own course on the matters".


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