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This article is more than 1 year old.

Explained: Why there is opposition to farm bills

Mini

The Lok Sabha has passed three bills related to the agriculture sector, on reforms, contract farming and to amend the Essential Commodities Act. But they are being opposed.

Explained: Why there is opposition to farm bills
The Lok Sabha has passed three bills related to the agriculture sector, on reforms, contract farming and to amend the Essential Commodities Act.
The aim of the bills is to effectively divide the agriculture sector into two:
production and post production.
With the country becoming self-sufficient and surplus in various crops, the idea is to help the farmer improve income by giving him the ability to sell directly and anywhere.
Here are five reasons why the bill has met with opposition.
  1. Farmers say that there were no consultations held with them on the bill. They say that even a virtual consultation, or discussion of the subject on PM Narendra Modi's Mann ki Baat would helped them understand the nuances of the bill.
  2. While the government did not consult with farmers, it held consultations with the industry. Farmers fear that the sector might become corporatised, leading them to have no say over their operations. Effectively, farmers are asking for safeguards in the bill.
  3. Arhatiyas (or commission agents or middlemen) are protesting as they lose out on their fees or commission. As per the bill, farmers can sell their produce directly to companies, businesses or traders.
  4. States like Punjab, Haryana, MP and UP are protesting as a). States should be part of any bill or Act as they facilitate rules on ground, and b). States lose on Mandi tax. For instance, Haryana mandi tax is 8 percent.
  5. The matter has now also taken a political colour, with the Opposition leaders and state parties supporting the farmer opposition to the bill.
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