BJP seeks explanation for amendments in FEMA

New Delhi: Opposition BJP today sought explanation from the government for making amendments in the the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) to allow FDI in multi-brand retail retrospective.

Five amendments, notified by the Reserve Bank of India between May and October this year, were tabled in the Rajya Sabha by Minister of State for Finance S Palanimanickam during Zero Hour.

Seeking reasons for making FEMA amendments retrospective, senior BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad raised a point of order saying, "As per the paper, many regulations under FEMA are being made retrospective. …a statement is required on the necessity to make it retrospective. Will the Minister kindly explain why, under what provision, and for what purpose, are these notifications of regulations being made retrospective?"

There are a series of reports of the Committee on Subordinate Legislation, which state that regulation cannot be made retrospective unless there is a provision in the parent law, he said.

"They have not been provisioned by Parliament. Through subordinate legislation, they are making it retrospective.

FEMA has far-reaching implications. He must explain that," he demanded.

Another senior BJP member Venkaiah Naidu also demanded such an explanation. BJP was supported by other Opposition parties, particularly CPI (M) and AGP.

Responding to their demand, Finance Minister P Chidambaram said, "I will certainly answer any question that is being raised. But, obviously, I would need time."