August 14, 2014
Central Govt concedes to Trinamool`s demand: FDI in Insurance Bill sent to Select Committee
Prime Minister Narendra Modi's first so-called 'big ticket reform' received a big jolt in Parliament. The Insurance Amendment Bill has been sent to a 15-member Select Committee and cannot be passed in this Session of the Parliament. Trinamool has consistently opposed FDI in Insurance, Defense and Railways and party MPs have been vocal on the issue inside and outside the House.
On August 13, 2014 during the Question Hour, Trinamool Chief Whip Derek O'Brien had asked the Union Minister of Commerce about the measures Govt was planning to take for the security of insurers in India in case a Lehman or AIG kind of crash happens. Earlier the party MP had said, “FDI is not the solution to all problems. FDI is Foreign Direct instruction. It is Foreign Direct Intrusion.”
The Rajya Sabha referred the Insurance Amendment Bill to a select committee for further scrutiny. A Select Committee is made up of members from political parties in proportion to their strength in the House. Trinamool Chief Whip in Rajya Sabha, Derek O'Brien will be the party's representative in this Committee.
The Bill, which proposes to increase the cap on foreign direct investment (FDI) in insurance joint ventures to 49% from 26%, has been vocally opposed by Trinamool in the Rajya Sabha. West Bengal Chief Minister herself is opposed to FDI. After the Cabinet cleared FDI in Railways and Defense, she had reacted on Facebook saying that the country's future is at stake.