Rules for the FDI face-off
Rajya Sabha 73 per cent of scheduled time due to disruptions following the CAG’s report on the allocation of
coal blocks. That issue remains unresolved. Subsequently, the issue of permitting FDI in multi-brand retail has taken centrestage.
The government’s move to permit FDI in multi-brand retail has been criticised not just by opposition parties, but also by some of its supporters. Indeed, the TMC walked out of the UPA on this issue. It may be useful to review the different options available to MPs to raise the issue.
The notification allowing FDI was an executive action and does not need prior parliamentary approval. Only the change in regulations issued under FEMA needs to be tabled in Parliament (and MPs may move a resolution to amend or annul the regulation). However, all executive actions do come under the oversight power of the legislature, and Parliament has the right to debate and require any amendments.
There are four main procedures under which there could be a discussion in the Lok Sabha — a debate without voting under Rule 193, a motion (with a vote) under Rule 184, and an adjournment motion or a no-confidence motion. There could also be a statutory resolution to amend or annul FEMA regulations. Each procedure has a different political implication.
The first procedure is often used to debate national issues on a variety of subjects.
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