In December 2013, Wal-Mart received the green signal from the Competition Commission of India (CCI) to purchase Bharti group's almost 50% stake in their Indian joint venture for wholesale stores business.
The joint venture -- Bharti Wal-Mart Private Limited -- was set up to operate wholesale stores under the Best Price Modern Wholesale brand. It was not catering directly to retail consumers in the country. Wal-Mart has been lobbying with American lawmakers since 2008 for facilitating its entry into the Indian market, according to lobbying disclosure reports filed by the company in the U.S. A probe, ordered by the Indian government in December 2012, into lobbying activities undertaken by Walmart to enter Indian retail market remained inconclusive.
The one-man inquiry panel, in its report tabled in the Rajya Sabha last month, could not "conclude in the absence of any material evidence available on record up till now, that Walmart indulged in any lobbying/bribery to Indian officials". Lobbying is a legal activity in the U.S., but all the companies and their registered lobbyists need to file quarterly disclosure reports with the Senate and the House of Representatives. In its Action Taken Report on Walmart probe, the government had said it would initiate fresh action against Walmart if an ongoing 'foreign corrupt practices' probe by U.S. authorities reveals any violation in India by the retail giant.