Farmers reach out to new areas through Kisan Sansad

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on January 23, 2021

Pointing out that the Centre did not hold winter session of Parliament to avoid a discussion on the issues of farmers, a group of activists, jurists and politicians held Kisan Sansad (Farmers’ Parliament) here on Saturday. The two-day meeting will end on Sunday. The Sansad is seen as an attempt by farmers’ outfits to reach out to more people.

Speakers and experts, who addressed the gathering near Singhu border, said the three Farm Acts will weaken the mandis, shut down the FCI and end procurement.

They said such steps would imply that the entire agricultural surplus that passes through the FCI and the mandis will be available for the multinational companies to handle.

Control of value chain

“Thus, corporate firms would gradually increase their control of the entire value chain and ultimately dominate it. It is clear that the new farm laws enacted by the government are fundamentally flawed. By enacting these laws, the central government has undermined powers of the states to enact laws related to agriculture and to make executive interventions in the interests of people,” a note circulated in the Sansad said.

Addressing the gathering, senior CPI(M) leader Brinda Karat said the insensitivity of the Centre towards the issue of farmers was astonishing.

She said the Centre must show political will as shown by the Kerala government to ensure MSP and procurement for the produces of farmers.

Justice Kolse Patil, Medha Patkar and Prashant Bhushan also spoke among others.

Farmers cannot rely on any oral or written assurance being given by the government that the MSP and procurement regime will continue, nor does that address what they are asking for, another note discussed in the Sansad said.

“What farmers require is a repeal of these Acts, and a new Act that confers a legal entitlement to a remunerative MSP (at C2+50 per cent) in all commodities upon all farmers, and makes it an obligation on the government to deliver on the same through a basket of measures including expanded procurement, effective and timely market intervention, through investments on storage/processing/value addition by farmers and importantly, by making MSP as the floor price guaranteed in all transactions of sale by farmers,” the note added.

Published on January 23, 2021

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