Probe panel on Walmart lobbying to submit report this week

Probe panel on Walmart lobbying to submit report this week New Delhi: The panel looking into retail major Walmart's lobbying activities with American lawmakers for its entry into the Indian market is likely to submit its report to the government in a day or two.

The one-man committee, headed by former Chief Justice of Punjab and Haryana High Court Mukul Mudgal, has finalised the report.

Sources said the report is expected to be submitted to the government "this week".

The conclusions of the panel could not be immediately ascertained.

The panel, which was set up in January this year, is looking into "whether Walmart undertook any activities in India in contravention of any Indian law", and any other matter relevant to this issue.

In the wake of intense political pressure following reports about Walmart's lobbying among the US lawmakers since 2008 for facilitating its entry into the Indian market, the government in December 2012 had assured Parliament to get the matter probed by a retired judge.

As per Congressional records of lobbying disclosure reports, the company spent a total amount of USD 6.13 million (about Rs 33 crore) on lobbying for various issues, including on "discussions related to FDI in India", during entire 2012.

The tenure of the committee, which was expected to present its report by April 30, was extended. The panel, which met five times, had also interacted with Walmart representatives besides gathering responses from the public on the matter.

The Corporate Affairs Ministry is providing the administrative support to the committee.

PTI