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Manmohan Singh, Sonia discuss Parliament logjam

Manmohan Singh, Sonia discuss Parliament logjamNew Delhi, Dec 11 : The Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi met here on Tuesday to discuss ways to resolve the logjam in Parliament over Walmart lobbying and quota in promotions issues.

According to reports, senior UPA leaders, who are members of the Congress Core Group, gathered at the Prime Minister''s Office in the Parliament House here where they are understood to have been briefed by Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath on the issues.

Finance Minister P. Chidambaram and Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde were among those who attended the meeting.

Both houses of Parliament were earlier in the day adjourned following uproar over reports of lobbying by Walmart to gain entry into India.

The media report had claimed that Walmart had lobbied with US lawmakers for the last four years to facilitate their entry into the Indian retail market.

It claimed that the company had spent 25 million dollars as per a report submitted in US senate. The amount is equivalent to Rs. 125 crore.

The disclosure of lobbying by Walmart in India comes just days after the Congress-led UPA Government won a vote in both houses of Parliament on its decision to allow Foreign Direct Investment or FDI in multi-brand retail.

Moreover, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) supremo Mayawati''s warning to the Centre on the issue of SC/ST quota in promotions in government jobs has also left the government in a tizzy.

Mayawati had earlier on Monday warned the Congress-led UPA Government of taking ''a tough stand'' if it does not push through new legislation that would reserve promotions in government jobs for those belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (SC/STs)

The quota bill was introduced in the Rajya Sabha in the Monsoon Session, but could not be taken up due to disruption on coal block issue.

The Bahujan Samaj Party has been demanding that the bill be passed, but the Samajwadi Party (SP) is opposing it. (ANI)