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September 19, 2012

INDIA: Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress quits coalition over FDI reform

India's Trinamool Congress Party is to resign from the country's governing coalition in protest over plans to open the door to foreign investment in the retail sector.

India’s Trinamool Congress Party is to resign from the country’s governing coalition in protest over plans to open the door to foreign investment in the retail sector.

In a statement last night (18 September), the Party’s Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said its six ministers would resign from the coalition on Friday.

“We have decided to quit United Progressive Alliance (UPA) and our ministers will submit their resignations on Friday to the Prime Minister in New Delhi,” Banerjee told members of a press conference in Kolkata yesterday.

“We cannot support [the] price hike on diesel and reduction in subsidised LPG cylinders. Allowing Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in retail sector will kill poor farmers which we cannot accept.”

The government launched its latest attempt to allow foreign firms to own 51% of multi-brand stores last week. Previous plans were shelved in December amid some local industry and political opposition.

Banerjee said ministers will go to Delhi on Friday to submit their resignations at 15:00 to the country’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

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