Farm laws: Historic or death warrant?

Chennai: Over the past few weeks, much has been written on the newly enacted farm bills, which have been termed ‘historic’ by the proponents while ‘death warrant’ for farmers by the opposition groups.

The issues of contention range from the removal of commission agents, entry of private players, absence of price fixation mechanism among others.

Dr Shivendra Bajaj, executive director, Federation of Seed Industry of India, said, for decades, the majority of farmers have been living under abject poverty due to arange of complex problems. However, low productivity and subsequent inadequate farm remuneration are the crucial reasons. In the past, farmers often complained about the exploitation by commission agent or middlemen in the APMC (Agriculture Produce Market Committee) mandis.

Farmers struggled to get remunerative prices even for those agriculture commodities, for which Minimum Support Prices (MSP) were declared by the government. Therefore, it was imperative for farmers to have different options, he added.

He said further: “On the other hand, farmers will now have to ensure what they produce is of optimum quality and meets the prescribed standards.”

 

NT Bureau