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What is the Farmers Bill and why are farmers protesting? India News

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NEW DELHI: The Center has called on all states and territories of the Union to tighten security during the ‘Bharat Bandh’ on Tuesday called by farmers’ unions and supported by opposition parties, while affirming that peace and tranquility must be maintained that day, officials said.
In a nationwide notice, the Union Interior Ministry also said that state governments and UT administrations must ensure that issued Covid-19 guidelines regarding health and social distancing are strictly followed.
The ‘Bharat Bandh’ has been called by farmers’ unions who have been protesting against the three agricultural laws enacted at the Monsoon Parliament Session. The main political parties came out on Sunday in strong support for the bandh.
Here’s everything you want to know about the new farm laws.

  1. Key provisions of the three bills

    The key provisions of the proposed legislation are intended to help small and marginal farmers (86% of all farmers) who do not have the means to negotiate their products for a better price or invest in technology to improve farm productivity. . The Farm Market Bill seeks to allow farmers to sell their produce outside of APMC’s ‘mandis’ to whoever they want. Anyone can buy their products even on the doorstep of their farm. Even though ‘commission agents‘from the’ mandis’ and the states could lose ‘commissions’ and’ mandi fees’ respectively (the main reasons for the current protests), farmers will get better prices through competition and reduced costs in transportation. on the other hand, allowing farmers to contract with agricultural companies or large retailers on previously agreed prices for their products. This will help small and marginal farmers, as the legislation will transfer the risk of market unpredictability from the farmer to the sponsor. The 2020 Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill seeks to remove commodities such as grains, legumes, oilseeds, edible oils, onions and potatoes from the list of essential commodities. It means that the legislation will eliminate the imposition of storage limits on such items, except in extraordinary circumstances, such as wars and natural disasters. This arrangement will attract foreign / private sector direct investment to the farming sector. This bill will move separately.
  2. What farmers fear:

    Farmers unions in Punjab and Haryana say recent laws enacted at the Center will dismantle the minimum support price (MSP) system. Over time, big corporations will dictate the terms and farmers will end up getting less for their crops, they argue. Farmers fear that with the virtual dissolution of the mandi system, they will not get a guaranteed price for their crops and the “arthiyas”, agents of the commission who also collaborate with loans for them, will be left without work.
  3. Farmers demand:

    The key demand is the withdrawal of the three laws that deregulate the sale of their crops. Farmers unions could also settle for a legal guarantee that the MSP system will continue, ideally through an amendment to the laws. They are also pushing for the 2020 Electricity (Amendment) Bill to be withdrawn, fearing it will lead to the end of Subsidized Electricity. Farmers say the rules against burning stubble shouldn’t apply to them either.
  4. How MSP Affects Farmers

    MSP is the minimum price the government pays when it purchases any crop from farmers. It is announced by the state Farm Cost and Price Commission (CACP) for more than 22 commodities annually, after calculating the cost of cultivation. Food Corporation of India (FCI), which is the main state grain procurement agency, buys mainly rice and wheat at these prices. The FCI then sells these food grains at highly subsidized prices to the poor and is then compensated by the government for its losses.
  5. What the government says

    The three agricultural laws have been projected by the government as major reforms in the agricultural sector that will eliminate intermediaries and allow farmers to sell anywhere in the country. Until 2020, the first sale of agricultural products could occur only in the mandis of the Agricultural Products Marketing Committee (APMC). However, after the Agricultural Products Trade and Trade (Promotion and Facilitation) Act 2020 came into force, it allows farmers to sell mandis outside of APMC in India.

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