New laws solve none of structural issues in agriculture, throw whole sector to Corporates: Bhalla
STATE TIMES NEWS
JAMMU: Led by former Minister and Vice President JKPCC, Raman Bhalla, Congress on Tuesday held a protest rally at Shaheeda Chowk Jammu, to protest against the anti famers legislations of the BJP Government at the Centre.
A large number of Congress workers holding placards amidst raising slogans in support of farmers agitation, assembled at PCC HQ Jammu and started protest march towards Press Club.
They were stopped by the heavily deployed police, who came into action and scuffled with the Congress leaders and workers and stopped them to move ahead.
Speaking on the occasion, Raman Bhalla appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to personally address all “genuine” issues of agitating farmers after putting aside all his other engagements.
The Prime Minister should resolve the issues of agitating ‘annadatas’ on a “top national priority” basis, he said.
When the Centre is repeatedly assuring farmers of continued procurement of their produce at the minimum support price, there should be no hitch in giving it a legal shape through necessary legislation, he added.
“The fact is that the BJP and its governments at the Centre and in states have got jittery by the success of farmers’ secular and democratic movement,” said Bhalla.
Former Minister said his party has been in the movement from the first day.
“Since then, in deference to the wishes of the agitating farmers, our entire focus and efforts have been towards a united fight with whole-hearted participation by our workers at different levels,” he said.
Bhalla further said that NDA government at the Centre must shun its “arrogance” and repeal the newly enacted farm laws. He said the farmers were spending nights on roads in the chilly winter weather as the “government continued to ignore their demands”.
He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi should directly intervene in the matter and listen to the demands of the protesting farmers. Government must not delay paying heed to the welfare issues of the farmers,” he said.
“The NDA government must shun its arrogance, insensitivity, adamant attitude and roll back the black farm laws. The Congress Party stands with our farmers in ensuring the Mandi system, MSP must continue and farmers and farm lands are saved from big corporate,” he said.
In India, over 50% of the workforce is dependent on agriculture with at least 70% of the rural households primarily dependent on the agriculture sector for their livelihood.
The new reforms allow large companies to buy produce from farmers directly. In India, farmers usually sell their produce at local state-registered markets that ensure them a minimum support price, which protects them from price shocks in case of a bad crop year.
“What these new laws do is they solve none of the structural issues in agriculture but throw the whole sector to the corporates, to the crony capitalists and to the big businessmen, and that is of great concern to the farmers and the labourers and the traders and everybody who is involved with the agrarian system,” Bhalla said.
“They’re allowing the corporates to draw lopsided agreements with no real legal recourse for the farmers and that will really shatter the farmers if the corporates renege on their promises.”
Along with Raman Bhalla, Smt. Kanta Bhan, Rajnish Sharma, Thakur Manmohan Singh, Satish Sharma, Krishan Lal Gupta, Manjit Singh Jatt, Sanjeev Panda, Rajvir Singh, Gajan Singh, Smt. Vandana Sharma, Suresh Dogra, Dr. Rama Kant Khajuria, Rajinder Singh Jamwal, Gourav Chiopra, Kamal Singh, Kewal Krishan Jogi, Rajesh Sharma, S. Gurmit Singh, Pawan Dev Singh, Sandeep Dogra, Nasar Masih, Sdr. H.S. Baggi, Sat Pal Spolia, Dewan Chand, Rajinder Kumar Meenia and others.