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Confused over certain clauses in the government’s controversial policy allowing 51% foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi brand retail and 100% in single brand retail market, the Supreme Court has sought the assistance of either attorney general or solicitor general to clear the doubts.

It also said only FDI policy and not its impact could be examined.

Refraining from issuing notice to the Union government and its other financial institutions on a PIL challenging FDI in retail, the court also wanted the name of prime minister deleted from the list of respondents.

During the prolonged hearing on lawyer ML Sharma’s PIL, a bench of justices RM Lodha and AR Dave said it wanted some clarification on the issue that’s been used as one of the tools to attack the UPA government. “Some link is missing’’, the judges remarked.

“These are matters (raised in PIL) dealt with exclusively by ministries,” judges remarked and said petitioner’s assumption that the policy has to be in the name of the president “is flawed and unfounded’’.

Sharma said the FDI notification was issued without the authority of law as approval of neither the president nor the parliament was secured.The top court also restrained the petitioner from raising the issues such as FDI would affect the livelihood of 35 crore families as they were self-employed in kirana, food, vegetables and other small businesses and more than 20 crores people were trading on footpaths. “Do not bring all these submissions. The government perspective is different from your perspective. They feel differently and think that it will give more jobs. Your concept may not be correct. We are on the legality and constitutionality of the policy,” the bench explained

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