The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has issued the following statement:
The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) strongly opposes the reported recommendations of a group of ministers headed by the agriculture minister to take out agriculture and plantations from the list of prohibited activities and open them up for hundred per cent FDI through the automatic route.
The Reserve Bank of India has itself asked the government to clarify whether it has decided to change the FDI policy permitting sensitive areas like agriculture, plantation, real estate and transfer of shares to non-residents through the automatic route.
Such a decision will only aggravate the already deepening agrarian crisis in the country which is marked by growing distress suicides and starvation deaths. Further, producers of commercial crops including plantations have severely suffered in the recent years due to the liberalisation of trade policies in these areas. In Kerala, particularly, lakhs of people are facing pauperisation especially in areas producing coffee, pepper, cardamom etc.
The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) calls upon the UPA government to desist from any such move and rescind any policy decisions, if taken, on this score.