Initiate anti-depressive measures, CPI to Govt

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New Delhi, Oct 23 (UNI) The CPI today demanded that the UPA government urgently take anti-depressive measures -- the nationalisation of the ICICI, withdrawal of the bill introduced in the Rajya Sabha allowing the foreign capital to take over private Indian banks and more investment in the productive sector -- in view of the global meltdown.

''The government has gambled by asking the RBI, SBI, mutual funds and the insurance companies to dole out huge national resources to bail out the Stock market," said CPI Floor Leader in the Lok Sabha Gurudas Dasgupta here.

At a news conference, Mr Dasgupta came out with facts and figures to suggest to the government to reverse its direction in the economic and financial sector, pleading that the Congress-led coalition should immediately withdraw the two bills, allowing foreign capital to take over Indian private banks and the second relating to the merger of banks, among other things.

On the demand for withdrawal of the bill introduced in the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday, he elaborated that the bill envisaged the hike in the foreign capital in the Indian private banks up to 74 per cent.

'' It means that the private banks can be taken over by the foreign banks,'' he added.

Mr Dasgupta, flanked by his senior colleagues in Parliament C K Chandrappan and D Raja, said the bloodbath in the Stock Market had made the FFIs withdraw nearly 11 billion dollars, the foreign exchange reserve depleting, the real estate prices slashing by at least 10 per cent from the peak times and the mutual funds losing at least Rs 30000 crore.

To buttress his claim, he quoted the steady decline in the rupee value, increasing job insecurity in the IT sector, and the ILO report, pointing out to the likely 10 lakh jobs in the Indian construction sector and the four private players to mange the Employees Provident Fund pumping out Rs 30000 crore to mop up the Stock market.

Elaborating, he said the insurance companies had invested Rs 55000 crore in the Stock market just in one year, the Indian mutual funds Rs 16,300 crore." The government has allowed short selling by allowing Participatory Notes, which happened in the Harshad Mehta's case too.'' On the demand for nationalising the ICICI, the CPI leaders said," this is the fountainhead of all the scam in the Stock Market as it has shares in the Lehmen Brothers." UNI KSA RL AS1615

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