Finally, The Great Indian FDI Mela is here.
The year 2012, previously cited as the human-predicted doomsday has turned out to be more of a celebration year. Till 2011 the fare grounds wore a forlorn and dismal gloom, but thanks to Walmart, Tesco, Carrefour’s fun, and games stalls deciding to open up, the UPA, the Mela organizers gave a second thought to it. Finally on 7th December, the organizer’s head office at Sansad Bhawan, Sansad Marg, New Delhi, it was decided that the Mela may be conducted without further delay.
However it needed the help of BSP and SP in organizing it! BJP, as always least amused by the Congress’ decisions, had decided that this Mela may not be conducted without having a vote with all the organizers in the fray. Mayawati, with her small but crucial support of 15 BSP MPs, decided to sway in the favour of Sonia Gandhi’s 94 members. SP bigwig Mulayam on the other hand, not in the favour of having a Retail Fare in the country (apparently) did a stylish walkout.
As the UPA won with a close margin, it was decided that Walmart inc. and others will surely get full fledged chances of setting up their outlets at the Mela albeit with a 51% ownership. India inc. has given their views in favour of this Fare, creating an opinion that the business class of the society gives its full support to it.
However, many of the wise crowds in the country believe that this decision may have its drawbacks. Cheaper though, this Mela might be, the previous Mela, termed as The Great Indian Retail Mela had many small and self sufficient outlets creating jobs for the local people, and satisfaction in the minds of its visitors. Since preparations for the upcoming, glamorous trumpeted Fare have started, with each passing hour, the sense of insecurity in the small shop owners is growing, and looking at the number of farmer’s suicides WITHOUT any news of the Mela, we might as well be looking at a future India without its backbone: agriculture.
The man next door will walk out of house to the nearest Tesco store and find everything under one, air-conditioned roof with mind-boggling low costs; but he forgets, a shop next to his apartment, in existence since the last 10 years whose owner now looks into helplessness with defaulted credit in his pocket and unsold goods on his shelf.
Indian players like Kishore Biyani wonder, why foreigners at all? If they can, then why can’t we? Why can’t we be the makers of our own goods and in turn make our country an entrepreneur’s haven which provides and profits the Indians itself?
Well, anyways, “Come one, Come all to the Great Indian FDI Mela, hopefully where, the shops are more and the visitors less.”
The author is Executive Editor, Intellectual Post