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AGRICULTURE

AIKSCC, post-consultations, finalises two bills, entitling farmers legally
Friday, 30 March, 2018, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Our Bureau, New Delhi
Two bills - the Freedom for Indebtedness Bill, 2018 and the Farmers’ Right to Guaranteed Remunerative Minimum Support Prices for Agricultural Commodities Bill, 2018 - were finalised, following nationwide consultations by the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC). These confer legal entitlements on all farmers.

Senior political leaders cutting across party lines extended their solidarity to the committee at a round table, organised at Constitution Club in New Delhi by the largest joint platform of farmers’ movements.

Leaders of many political parties participated in the event, and lent strong and clear support to the effort of AIKSCC in creating legal entitlements for farmers on issues of indebtedness and lack of remunerative prices.

It was resolved that a joint committee of representatives of AIKSCC and political parties will be constituted to fine-tune the Bills, and that all-out efforts will be made to pass the Bills at least in the Upper House.

Dinesh Trivedi, Member of Parliament (MP), All India Trinamool Congress (AITC), and a former minister, recommended that there should be a demand for a Special Session of Parliament to find a solution to the agrarian crisis in the country. This suggestion found favour with all the participants, including AIKSCC members, and it was decided to raise this demand in a unified manner.

Besides Trivedi, the senior leaders who participated in the Round Table included Mallikarjun Kharge (Indian National Congress), opposition leader in Lok Sabha; Sharad Pawar, MP, Nationalist Congress Party, and former agriculture minister; Sharad Yadav, former chairperson, National Democratic Alliance (NDA); Sitaram Yechury, general secretary, CPI-M; Farooq Abdullah, president, J&K National Conference; Nagendra Pradhan, MP, BJD; Kanimozhi, MP, DMK; Sanjay Singh, MP, AAP; Arvind Sawant, MP, Shiv Sena; Jay Prakash Yadav (RJD); Danish [JD(S)]; Babulal Marandi, former chief minister, Jharkhand, and president, JVM; V Vijaysai Reddy, MP, YSRCP; Trilok Tyagi, general secretary, RLD, and Darshan Singh Khattar, CPI-ML New Democracy.  

Leaders cutting across political parties bemoaned the fact that the current government, instead of doing something positive for farmers, was actually worsening the situation in numerous ways.

Parties agreed that debt relief for farmers is acutely needed, and that the nation owes it to them.

“The fact that the National Commission for Farmers’ recommendations on price formula have not been implemented for more than a decade meant that debts of farmers have built up, and just on that count, farmers’ loans have to be waived immediately,” they added.

All parties expressed deep appreciation for the effort of AIKSCC in formulating legal entitlements for farmers, which is a unique and first-time effort in the country.

It was resolved that tabling of the Bills and debating the same in Parliament would send a clear message to farmers in the country that there is a united struggle being mounted in a stronger fashion, to secure basic rights for them.

“This will go a long way in preventing farmers from committing suicides,” it was opined.

V M Singh, convenor, AIKSCC, expressed confidence that the farmers’ movements would be strengthened by such support.
 
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