Why Bharat Band? What is New Farm Bill

FARM BILL 2020

On December 8, nationwide India bandh has been called on behalf of farmers on new agricultural laws. Apart from Congress, 11 political parties across the country have given their support for this bandh. Thousands of farmers have been agitating against the new agricultural laws of the Center for the last 11 days.


There are three bills related to farmers which are passed by the parliament of India.

1 The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill 2020.

2 The Farming Produce Trade and Commerce(Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020.

3 The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, 2020.

 

Bharat Band

The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill 2020.

By the very name of the bill, we can say that it is related to the protection and empowerment of farmers’ interest through a legal agreement. But what kind of protection to farmers, when a businessman tries to purchase any cereal such as pulses, rice etc. from farmers , there is a possibility that farmer can be cheated like businessman or buyer can claim that half of the crop product was not good. So in order to protect the farmer from such activities, this bill makes mandatory to have legal agreement between the farmer and the buyer or businessmen. Whatever the price decided in the agreement, the farmer will get that price. This was the explanation for the word ‘price assurance’. What about the word ‘farm services’?.  Farm services is somewhat related to Contract Farming. When a buyer wants to purchase any goods from farmer, he can ask for a particular product or any standard quality. The agreement will decide the conditions for farm products and their delivery requirements or the quality of the products or any thing else. The amount of money or remuneration to farmer is already decided by the agreement. So, we can say that it is a kind of contract farming where terms and conditions are mutually decided by the parties.

However, there are certain chances where the Buyer or Company can dominate the farmers who are less educated with legal clause in the agreement.

 

The Farming Produce Trade and Commerce(Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020.

This bill is related to the trading of the farm goods outside the Mandi or APMC (Agricultural Produce Market Committee) Yard. Earlier, the farmers have to sell their goods to the Mandis or the warehouse that comes under APMC Yard. But this bill empowers the farmers to trade outside the Mandis or within the state or outside the state. Agriculture comes under state list so state do generate a lot of taxes. These Mandis are come under the APMC Yard which is regulated by the state. So, by this bill state will lose its tax. If a farmer wants MSP(Minimum Support Price) then he has to register himself in the Mandis. This bill empowers the farmers to sell their goods outside the mandi and state cannot put taxes on the farm goods sold outside the Mandi. So it the discretion of the farmer to sell the farm goods in the Mandi or outside the Mandi. So those who are crying that MSP has been removed, they need a reality check.

 

The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, 2020.

The purpose of the bill is to protect the people from the black marketing. When there is a high price of any commodity, the central government can put that commodity under this act and by this step the price of commodity will be decided by the government and people cannot sell the commodity higher than the price fixed by the government. Once the Price becomes reasonable , the government can remove the same. The amendment in the bill is the removal of certain essential commodities. The price of the essential commodity will be regulated by the government in case of War, Famine, High Price, or Natural Calamities only. These commodities are the food items such as pulses, potatoes, onion, oils etc. 



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