Rajasthan governor yet to clear bills brought to counter Central farm laws
Three bills passed in the Rajasthan assembly in November last year to counter the Central farm laws, which were enacted in 2020 and have triggered protracted farmer protests, remain pending with governor Kalraj Mishra for 10 months. An official familiar with the matter said Mishra has cited a lack of jurisdiction to amend the Central laws for keeping the proposed legislations on hold.
The assembly passed the Essential Commodities (Special Provisions and Rajasthan Amendment) Bill, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services (Rajasthan Amendment) Bill and the Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation and Rajasthan Amendment) Bill.
The bills seek to “protect the interest of farmers, farm labourers, those engaged in ancillary and incidental activities relating to production, sale, and marketing of agricultural produce as also consumers and for adherence to the minimum support price mechanism”.
Political commentator Avadhesh Akodia said Constitution’s Article 254(2) allows a state to make changes to Central legislation on a subject on the concurrent list only if it gets the Presidential assent.
Ruling Congress spokesman and minister Pratap Singh Khachariyawas said the intention and policy of the state government are clear: “We are with the farmers.” He added they hope the governor will do justice.
Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party leader Ram Lal Sharma said the three bills have no constitutional validity. “...the state has no right to bring amendments in Central laws.”