Agriculture Bill: Vociferous Protest based upon Anticipation
Author: Deobrat S. Gaur
Designation: B.Com L.L.B Student, UPES
Email ID: Deobrat11gaur@gmail.com
Recently three bills on the subject matter of agriculture in order to bring a substantial reform in the agricultural sector and to make the Indian farmers AatmNirbhar (independent) were witnessed to be introduced inside the parliament which is basically an replacement of the ordinance issued in the month of June 2020.
The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020
The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020
The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, 2020
Immediate repurcurssion of the ordinace was immense disagreement coupled with vociiferous protest majorly in the state of Haryana and Punjab.
Following the protest Punjab assemby on the 28th of August reached to an consensus to potently reject the ordinace and passed a resolution to give effect to rejection.
AIMS AND CHARACTERSTICS OF THE BILL
The propose bills removes the interference of the government;
It reduces the burden of farmers to carry on inter-state trade;
It obliterate the holding limits of stock, and
It facilitates the option of contract farming which basically empowers the farmers to reach to a consensus with prior the farming , and so that intrest of the farmers is protected;
It will provide liberty to the farmer to conduct sale of the produce directly with the trader, without taking into consideration the middleman, and which is free from levies which is to be paid in mandi as a fees;
It acknowledge the facility of electronic trade;
It refrains the governmennt of the state from collecting any kind of levies or cess or fees for the trade which is effectuated outside the markets of APMC;
The farmers can sell there produce as per there convenience and pleasure without bearing the cost and risk of transportation as they can reach consensus directly with the private trader who will come at the place near the village or where the produce is stored by the farmer and take the produce from there only.
CAUSES OF DISAGREEMENT BY THE OPPOSTION AND FARMERS
1. Against the spirits of constitution and cooperative federalism
The root cause of the major resentment of the ordinance by the state is because of the fact that markets , trade and agriculture are entry 28 and 14 respectively and the subjects of the state list, i.e., List 11. Hence the ordinance is seen as a direct violation of the function of the state.
The state considers the instant bills as colorable legislation, and violation of doctrine of seperation of powers
Comment of the centre
The centres categorically denies the claim of the state government and states that the bills are effectuated by virtue of subject trade and commerce in food falls under concurrent List.
2. An attempt to put an end to Minimum Support Price
Since the bills allows the agriculture trade to happen outside the APMC which is unregulated and which is free from any kind of levy and tax etc., a lot of trade will bound to happen in the outside markets, hence by virtue of which there are flood of apprehension that the compulsory procurement by the government will end.
3. An attempt to Vanish the mandis
Since the bills allows the agriculture trade to happen outside the APMC regulated Mandis which is free from any kind of levy and tax etc, it is potentially very lucrative for both the farmers and the private traders to trade outside , hence the majority will shift their leading to the extinction of the regulated Mandis as no one would likely to pay the cess and levies.
4) It will create Cartles
As the Non-APMC markets are not regulated by the government and is free from the cess, tax etc ,there is a potent anticipation that it will lead to the creation of the buyers cartle which will be against the interest of the farmers.
5) No provision for price fixation.
The opposition and the farmers are apprehending that since there is no provision which prescribes the price for the Non-APMC markets it would lead to the exploitation of the farmers, and the demand in the market is very sluggish hence, it will lead the labours in a vulnerable state to even sell their produce in much less price.
ARGUMENT OF THE GOVERNMENT
Our hon’ble prime minister Narendra Modi stated that it is a malafide attempt by the opposition to misrepresent the farmers and create unnecessary disharmony and to sow the seeds of discord and raise the feeling of distrust for the government.
Bills are effectuated by virtue of subject trade and commerce in food falls under Concurrent List.
Minimum Support Price are present and as the bill is in pursuance to bring substantial reform in the agriculture sector in order to support the farmers not to weaken them.
Earlier the farmers were in a vulnerable state as they were compelled to sell the produce in the mandi which charge tax even up-to 8.5%, now they can directly come in contact with the private buyer and effortlessly sell their produce, without the exploitation of the middlemen.
The Government should take potent steps to ensure that the formulation of trade cartles is prohibited.
As there are lot of disagreement which is based on the apprehension and probability hence, the government should take measures to remove all kinds of ambiguity and should hold campaigns to address the query and clarification of the doubts of the farmers, traders, and the opposition.
Provision for the regulation of Non-APMC mandis or the private market should be made.
Provision for price fixation in Non-APMC mandis or the private market.