Farmer are free to sell the agricultural produce as they may choose. It may come as rude shock that until today every farmer was bound to sell it’s agricultural produce at the ‘specified market’ which was a euphemism of a close corporation consisting of politicians rather their proxies. The ‘Management’ of ‘Market’ had the power to dictate the price of the produce.
The Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) was introduced as a reform to uplift the living of farmers but it subjugated them forcing them to make ‘illegal’ sale to outsiders without intervention of APMC. It was a cause of corruption and hardship for farmers. India had a unique institution called ‘Aadhatiya’ which was a mixture of middle man for sale and a money lander to finance agriculture operation. These Aadhatiya which were to be replaced by APMC but they became management of APMC. Three bills will pave the way for the sale of agricultural produce free from traders / Aadhatia/Dalal/Middle man. It will also protects to the farmers from market fluctuations through ‘Contract Farming’.
In most APMCs, buyers have to route all purchases through licenced Aadhatiyas(middlemen). These middlemen charge a commission for their “services” — many times, both from the buyer and seller. The Aadhatiya is also often a moneylender, supplying seeds, fertilizers and pesticides to farmers on credit. They, then, are forced to sell through him and settle their dues in perpetuity. Also, mandi fees ranges from 0.5% to 5% on the value of the sale, while varying across states and commodities. (Here is a good article explaining the issues in detail.)
Here is Congress leader Kapil explaining the the Dalal or Middleman at work:
The three Bills named as Agriculture Reforms Bill 2020 Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Price Assurance and Contract Bill for Agricultural Services and Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill were enacted as Ordinance on 5 June 2020.
Now these have been enacted as law by Parliament. No protest was expressed by any political party and farmers organization until it was brought to Parliament last week.
From the opposition parties to the Congress government of Punjab and allies like the Akali Dal (Badal) and Jananayak Janata Party, which are in the NDA, all were in its favor.
After the crowds, instigated by the vested interest-driven Aadhatiya lobby, come out on the road, some political parties have been competing against these bills to appear farmer-friendly.
In Punjab alone, there are 28 thousand Aadhatiya. Their reach and influence is not only limited to the farmers, but they also have a good penetration among political parties. This is a protest sponsored by the Adhatiya lobby and inspired by vote bank politics. In fact.
Passing of bill in Parliament:
During debate in Parliament, YSR Congress Part, MP VV Reddy termed Congress as “a party of middlemen dalals” and said that there is no reason for Congress to oppose agricultural-related Bills. (Dalal means middle-man who takes a cut in every deal) While supporting the bills, Reddy said:
“I want to bring the hypocrisy of Congress party. In their manifesto of Lok Sabha elections. They have said the same things which are in the bills and now they are not supporting the bills now? Those supporting it (Bills) are pro-farmers, those opposing it are pro-dalal.”
O’Brien gets in the well:
TMC MP Derek O’Brien who in most part of his life acted as a Quiz Master, shamed his own education by entering the well and throwing the House rule book at Deputy Chairman Rajya Sabha and thus disrupted the discussion in the House on agriculture Bills Sloganeering continues as members charge towards the podium shouting slogans and protesting, members wave the rule book at RS deputy chairman Harivansh and attempt to pull mikes. Rajya Sabha telecast had to be muted to suppress the noise. Farming bills were passed by voice vote and house was adjourned amid ruckus. An APP member climbed upon a table clapping like a professional dancer. Video Channels pulled out his back ground as a movie ticket seller of back marketed tickets in Sultanpur.
Suspension of 8 Members:
8 members of the opposition who created uproar in the Rajya Sabha have been suspended by the Speaker Venkaiah Naidu for a week. These actions were done by the Chairman Derek O’Brien, Sanjay Singh, Rajiv Satava, K.K. Ragesh, Ripun Bora, Dola Sen, Syed Nazir Hussain and Elamram Karim. Along with this, the Chairman has also rejected the motion of no confidence against Harivansh, Deputy Chairman of Rajya Sabha. He said that yesterday was the worst day for the Rajya Sabha. Speaker also observed that the conduct of some members crossed all limits of etiquette, damaging the reputation of the House. See it here:
Why that MP from Delhi’s regional party climbed on table to cause rukus and do it in full display of camera? Delhi is an Urban City with no APMC. Whom was this MP Sanjay Singh, representing? Farmers of which state? Aadhatiya of Pujab and Haryana? May be.