Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday announced roll back of the three controversial farm laws which, are at the heart of massive farmer protests across the country for over a year. The announcement came just months before elections in states like Uttar Pradesh and Punjab.
After the announcement, Congress-in charge of Uttar Pradesh, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra took a dig at the Prime Minister and said the PM had been forced to climb down only because of ‘upcoming polls’.
“Watching him (the PM), I thought of the family of Daljit Singh, one of the farmers who died. I wondered what they were thinking – the son of a minister in the Modi government crushed him, the family must be thinking the Prime Minister never came to visit them, the minister still shares stage with the PM, and today the PM is apologising ? The elections are approaching – surveys show the BJP is on a weak footing… that is why they are doing this,” Priyanka Gandhi told reporters.
“Who will trust the Prime Minister’s intention? Everything is clear before the country. If the government was serious, proper action would be taken on Lakhimpur,” she said.
Asked whether the opposition would now have to recalibrate its strategy for western UP, the Congress leader said: “I feel there is no one wiser than the farmer in this country. They see and realise everything and one must not doubt their ability to perceive and understand what is happening.”
In a major decision, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday announced that the government will repeal the three farm laws, which were at the centre of protests by farmers for the past year.
In his address to the nation, PM Modi said, “Today I want to tell everyone that we have decided to repeal all three farm laws.”
Farmers have been protesting the government’s three farm laws since had passed the Farmer’s Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020, and the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020.
The three farm laws are– The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act provides for setting up a mechanism allowing the farmers to sell their farm produces outside the Agriculture Produce Market Committees (APMCs). Any licence-holder trader can buy the produce from the farmers at mutually agreed prices. This trade of farm produces will be free of mandi tax imposed by the state governments.
The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Act allows farmers to do contract farming and market their produces freely. The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act is an amendment to the existing Essential Commodities Act.