In a veiled attack on BJP's opposition to FDI in retail, home minister P Chidambaram today said political parties which believe that the country should go ahead with economic reforms should neither change their stand nor be apologetic about it.
"Economic reforms will go forward. There will be obstacles. But I think economic reforms will go forward.... We should not be apologetic about reforms. ...regrettable it is political parties which change (their) stand. Political parties must have conviction and this should be maintained," he said at a public event.
Chidambaram, a former finance minister, said FDI in retail was not a new policy and it has been around for many years now.
"It is not a new policy. FDI in single brand retail has been around for many years. Nobody has closed down (their shops) because of this. We have simply carried the process forward. We already have 51% and now it will be 100%. Whether 51% or 100%, it is not going to change the economic landscape of the country," he said.
Chidambaram wondered how many of foreign companies will enter the retail business in the country and in how many cities they would set up their shops.
"Even if they go, they will go 20 kms away from the city provided there is land and all. Going by the experience, three or four will come to India. They will bring technology and experience. This will definitely improve distribution chain," Chidambaram.