Don’t Need Niti Sermons on Swadeshi Policies, Says SJM

NEW DELHI: While Niti Aayog vice-chairman Rajiv Kumar has recently appealed to Swadeshi Jagran Manch (SJM) to consider a new definition of ‘Swadeshi Economics’, the Manch on Wednesday said the think tank is giving sermons without proper research.

In a recent interview to ET, Kumar had urged the RSS affiliate Manch to look at the definition of ‘Swadeshi Economics’ in the light of two critical objectives — generating more jobs and high growth.

“We don’t need sermons from others on Swadeshi policies and everybody should be open to other ideas, including Niti Aayog. We have been raising questions about this open-door approach to FDI and our reports show that outgo and royalty on FDI have gone up by four times. Has Niti Aayog questioned this? Is there any valid research it has to show that FDI is increasing employment especially in multi brand retail and this Walmart deal which it is trying to promote. In fact, Niti Aayog has been in the habit of giving sermons without any research on research,” SJM national co-convenor Ashwani Mahajan told ET.

“We have proof that retailers get hurt within three kilometres of a Walmart store opening. Why is there so much interest in Walmart in Niti Aayog when the government is seized of the matter? We have said time and again that there is a need to look into FDI policy and we want the government to come out with a white paper on FDI in all fields, including in retail,” he said. Rajiv Kumar had said in the ET report that there was little case for government intervention in case of a ‘friendly merger’ like Flipkart-Walmart.

Reacting to his views, Mahajan had tweeted saying: “@RajivKumar1 ji friendly @NITIAayog is not going to help this ‘friendly deal’. Already there are a few hundred cases against this company in question for violating laws. You please make necessary corrections in your notes”.

SJM has sought government intervention to stall the deal which it has called ‘back door entry’ to FDI in retail. SJM has also said this is very detrimental to the future of small retailers in India.

Mahajan was reacting to another strong tweet by All India Online Vendors Association questioning Rajeev Kumar’s view in the ET report.

“@RajivKumar1why are you silent on violations of FDI policy, anti competitive practices and absence of regulatory and nodal authorities for this sector? We dont expect to hear from you on above anytime,” tweeted All India Online Vendors Association.

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