LOW-COST airline entrepreneur Capt G R Gopinath, who recently joined the Aam Aadmi Party, on Wednesday lashed out at the party for its decision to reject FDI in multi-brand retail in Delhi as promised in its manifesto ahead of the Delhi assembly polls.
Gopinath called for a rethink in the AAP on its stance on FDI in retail since the party faces the prospect of being accused of resorting to populist gimmicks to further its political ends.
“This move to reject FDI in retail will send out a wrong message to investors about the country’s economic policies. We should not move hastily on policy decisions of the country,” the entrepreneur and founder of the erstwhile Air Deccan airlines said. The move to oppose FDI in retail would amount to promoting crony capitalism in India where established players are seeking a monopoly, he said.
Opening up the retail sector for FDI would benefit a cross section of society, including farmers, and the economy, he said. “The view of small retailers is unfounded. That’s the old BJP lobby of small traders. Their fears are unfounded,” he said.
Asked if he would reconsider his joining the AAP, Gopinath said, “Of course not, I admired them and still do. But I don’t have to agree on everything.” “It is still a young party, a few months old. So AAP must step back a little and take its time and come out with a long-term vision for India on economy, fiscal policy, defence and foreign affairs that will create a stable India which can remove poverty and improve living standards and create a happy society,” he added.