Obama visit to promote US business interests: CPI-M

Sunday, November 21, 2010

NEW DELHI - The visit of US President Barack Obama to India was aimed at promoting the business and commercial interests of his country and the Manmohan Singh government appeared to be moving in step with American geopolitical strategy, the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) said Sunday.

“The outcome of the visit of the US President Obama has been to promote the business and commercial interests of the United States and to draw India into a closer military and security relationship,” the CPI-M said in a statement after the meeting of its central committee here.

“The joint statement issued after the visit has talked about opening up Indian agriculture and retail trade for American MNCs. This will be detrimental to the interests of the crores of small and marginal farmers and small retail shop owners and traders. The joint statement spells out a close defence and security relationship which involves buying US weapons on a large scale,” it said.

The CPI-M said Manmohan Singh government “seems to be falling in step with the geopolitical strategy of the United States” in order to earn US endorsement for India’s permanent membership of the Security Council, but there were no prospects in the immediate future for such a membership to materialize.

“When it does so, it has to be on the basis of India’s independent role and influence and when the United Nations structure is democratised,” the party said.

The party also warned the UPA government against opening up multi-brand retail trade to foreign companies.

“The ministry of commerce and industry is pushing for such an opening. The central committee decided to mobilize small traders and shopkeepers and public opinion against the entry of foreign retail chains,” it said.

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