‘Rise above politics’: Punjab CM Amarinder Singh tables draft resolution against Centre’s farm laws
The draft resolution seeks the annulment of the farm laws and the proposed electricity amendment bill, as well as promulgation of “a fresh ordinance making the procurement of food grains on the Minimum Support Price a statutory right of the farmers and continue with procurement by Government of India through FCI and other such agencies”, a statement from his office said.Updated: Oct 20, 2020, 12:43 IST
Punjab chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh, who has been a vocal opponent of the recently-passed farm laws and has rallied across the state to convince farmers to not fall into Centre’s ‘trap’, on Tuesday tabled a draft resolution against the legislation and the proposed electricity amendment bill during the state’s assembly session and urged all parties to rise above politics.
The draft resolution seeks the annulment of the farm laws and the proposed electricity amendment bill, as well as promulgation of “a fresh ordinance making the procurement of food grains on the Minimum Support Price a statutory right of the farmers and continue with procurement by Government of India through FCI and other such agencies”, a statement from his office said.
The passage of three farm bills by the Centre during the monsoon session of Parliament comes with a promise that India’s agricultural sector will be reformed and more avenues of investment from private players will open up. But there have been nationwide protests against the imposition of these newly-framed laws with a fear that farmers might become slaves to big corporations. A recent survey conducted by Gaon Connection showed that more than 50% of the farmers are against the implementation of these laws.
Several members of Opposition parties have led the charge to boycott the Centre’s laws in the form of rallies, protests with a view that India’s agricultural base will be weakened.
The draft resolution aims to abolish the new farm bills along with the proposed Electricity (Amendment) Bill, 2020, and further declare a new law which would make the Minimum Support Price (MSP) policy a statutory right of the farmers. It stated that the process of procuring food grains from the Food Corporation of India (FCI) and the Centre along with several other agencies will continue.
It also mentioned the regret of the state assembly over “callous and inconsiderate attitude of the Government of India in attending to the concerns of the farming community on recent alleged farm legislation enacted by them.”
Singh also introduced three counter bills in the session - the Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Special Provisions and Punjab Amendment Bill 2020, the Essential Commodities (Special Provisions and Punjab Amendment) Bill 2020, and the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services (Special Provisions and Punjab Amendment) Bill 2020.
He pointed out the bills which have been introduced today would be the basis of Punjab’s legal battle ahead and have to be carefully examined before they are presented.
“The draft resolution states that Farm laws are against the Constitution (Entry 14 List-II), which mentions agriculture as a state subject and these legislations are a direct attack to encroach upon functions and powers of states as enshrined in the Constitution,” the chief minister added.
(With agency inputs)