Indian Express

Kejriwal makes common cause with traders: I’m Baniya too

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Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal. Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal on day one of his three-day tour of Haryana and Chandigarh. (PTI photo)

After attempting to woo farmers in Haryana by raising the issue of land acquisition, Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal Friday tried to reach out to the trading community in the state by flagging the controversy over FDI in retail — and identifying with them as someone who belongs to their caste.

“I come from a Baniya family. Most of my relatives are businessmen. I know that it is not easy to do business in this country — 10 people will approach you for money,” the former Delhi CM said at a grain market in Dadri.

Two weeks after coming to power in Delhi, Kejriwal’s AAP government had in January withdrawn approval given to FDI in multi-brand retail by the previous Congress government, saying global experience showed FDI leads to job losses and that Delhi is not prepared for FDI on Friday, Kejriwal reiterated that traders had suffered in countries which allowed FDI in retail.

“Didn’t all of you oppose FDI in retail when it was being brought about? The Congress has been bought, so is the BJP. Earlier, the BJP had said that they were opposed to FDI in retail. At a recent conference when Modiji was asked about FDI in retail, he said, ‘why are all of you scared of foreign investment?’ Walmart se dono ki setting hai. (Both Congress and BJP have struck a deal with Walmart),” he said.

Kejriwal also attacked the BJP’s PM candidate Narendra Modi saying he was playing it safe by contesting from two constituencies.

“There is no Modi wave in this country. If there was a Modi wave, then he would not have fought elections from two seats. Why is he fighting from Vadodara? He should have fought just from Varanasi where there would have been a face-off.”

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