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The New York Times reports that Indian regulators have launched an informal probe - emphasizing that it is not yet a "formal inquiry" - into Walmart's $100 million investment "in an Indian company, Bharti Retail, which operates more than 200 supermarkets across India, at a time when India restricted foreign investments in retailing. The investment took the form of debt securities that paid no interest to Wal-Mart but could be converted into a 49 percent ownership stake in Bharti ... Officials want to determine if the loan from Wal-Mart to Bharti was intended to skirt the letter or the spirit of the foreign investment rules."

According to the Times, "The investigation into Wal-Mart’s relationship with Bharti was prompted by a letter last month to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh from a lawmaker representing the Communist Party of India (Marxist), which opposes foreign investment in retailing and many other sectors."

Both Walmart and Bharti deny that they have done anything illegal.
KC's View:
This just feels like a nuisance probe that is politically motivated, as opposed to the investigation into widespread bribery by Walmart in Mexico, which seems like a much bigger deal.

But you never know.