Amidst wide opposition and protests from the opposition party, the Two of the three agriculture-related legislation piloted by the Narendra Modi government, aimed at liberalising the farm sector, were passed by the Rajya Sabha by voice vote on Sunday.
The Farmer’s Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020, and The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020, were passed by voice vote. After which PM Narendra Modi described it as a “watershed moment” for Indian agriculture.
The opposition parties along with some alliance partners of NDA however demanded that both the bills should be sent for greater scrutiny to a parliamentary committee, but they failed to win required number of votes in the Upper House.
The opposition have alleged that the bills would hurt the open procurement of wheat and rise at Minimum Support Price(MSP),corporatisation of the farm sector etc.
Meanwhile the BJP government assured that both the bills would benefit the agricultural sector and farmer’s life and also will help provide them a level-playing field. BJP Bhupendra Singh Yadav while targetting the opposition assured that the bills are the biggest agricultural reforms of the recent time and will focus on
value addition, trade and marketing.He even said that the opposition is trying to hamper the progress only for their own parties concern.
The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020, seeks to give freedom to farmers to sell their produce outside the notified APMC market yards (mandis) and is aimed at facilitating remunerative prices through competitive alternative trading channels, The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020 ,seeks to give them the right to enter into a contract with agribusiness firms, processors, wholesalers, exporters, or large retailers for the sale of future farming produce at a pre-agreed price.
The Rajya Sabha during the discussion was subjected to a heated amount of debate from both the sides, with papers being flung and protests.
(With inputs included from LiveMint)