Punjab is a land of five rivers. It is the agricultural state of India. Most of the agricultural produce comes from Punjab. It became the first state in the country to formally reject the central government’s agricultural legislation.
The Assembly had passed a resolution that rejected the Central government legislations demanding their immediate changes. It also asked to protect the Minimum Support Price (MSP) and ensure the continuance of procurement by the Centre.
The bills passed by the government gave freedom to the farmers to sell their produce outside the notified APMC market yards (mandis). Farmers will not be charged for the sale of their produce under the act.
Farmers will get the freedom to enter into a contract with any agricultural business firms, companies, wholesalers, or exporters for the sale of future farming produce at a pre-agreed price because of the introduction of the new bill system.
Because of these bills, the interest of the farmers may or may not be protected. There can also be a misuse of the bills too.
Which are the three bills?
- The Farmers’ (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance
- Farm Services (Special Provisions and Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2020, and
- The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) (Special Provisions and Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2020.
What are the consequences?
According to the state bills, there is imprisonment for less than three years in case of the sale or purchase of wheat or rice below the minimum support price (MSP) as prescribed.
The exemption will be given to the farmers will be given on land ownership up to 2.5 acres. There will also be the prevention of hoarding and black-marketing of agricultural produce.
In the three bills, passed by the Punjab government, the CM claimed that if the Central laws are not withdrawn, it would lead to anger among the youth farmers. He warned that there is a possibility of disruption of peace in the Punjab state.