FDI: PM convens all party meet to end Par logjam

New Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has convened an all-party meeting on Tuesday to end the Parliament logjam over FDI in retail, as another key UPA ally DMK today lent fresh political muscle to swelling opposition to Government`s decision.

Posing problems to the UPA, DMK joined Trinamool Congress to demand that the Government immediately withdraw the decision of opening up the retail sector to 51 per cent FDI.

Upping the ante, NDA Convenor and JD(U) President Sharad Yadav and BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain said the question of allowing Parliament to function does not arise till government reverses the decision.

"Rollback FDI in retail and (you can) run the House," BJP`s Sushma Swaraj and Leader of Opposition told the Government in remarks suggesting that a resolution of the Parliament stalemate could be difficult. Sushma said the Prime Minister has called an all-party meeting at 9.30 AM tomorrow.

Government on its part sought to reach out to MPs and Chief Ministers and appealed to them to rise above "petty" partisanship on the issue.

"I felt it is my duty to dispel some apprehensions expressed by certain political parties," Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma said in his letter to members of the two Houses of Parliament which was deadlocked on the FDI issue for the second day today.

Breaking his silence on the issue, DMK supremo and former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi called as "dangerous" the FDI decision and said it cannot be justified and demanded that Government withdraw the decision.

Stepping up the Trinamool offensive to the delight of the opposition which has closed ranks, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said Foreign Direct Investment(FDI) in retail would not be implemented in the state. "We will not allow 51 per cent FDI in retail in West Bengal. It will affect the livelihood of about five crore people," she said in Howrah.

Odisha Chief Miniser and BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik dubbed the Government`s decision as `highly regressive` and `ill advised` and wrote a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh urging him to withdraw the measure..