THE NEW FARMING LAWS
WHY ARE THE FARMERS PROTESTING?
On September 17th, 2020, three agricultural bills were passed by the parliament of India' s Lok Sabha, and then by the Rajya Sabha 3 days later.
The New Bills, portrayed by the Government as a means to giving farmers full control over the distribution and sale of their crop, in reality leave the farmers vulnerable to an overhaul by large corporations who have been heavily investing in the agro-tech space.
The farmers have one demand; Simply repeal the laws.
THE 3 NEW AGRICULTURE ACTS
Farmer's Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020
- Expands the scope of trade areas of farmers' produce from select areas to "any place of production, its good collection, aggregation".
- allows electronic trading and e-commerce of scheduled farmers' produce.
- prohibits state governments from levying any market fee, cess, or levy on farmers, traders, and electronic trading platforms for the trade of farmers' produce conducted in an 'outside trade area'.
Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020
- provides a legal framework for farmers to enter into pre-arranged contracts with buyers including mention of pricing.
- defines a dispute resolution mechanism.
Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020
- removes foodstuff such as cereals, pulses, potato, onions, edible oilseeds, and oils, from the list of essential commodities, removing stockholding limits on such items except under "extraordinary circumstances"
- requires that imposition of any stock limit on agricultural produce be based on price rise