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Lok Sabha Passes Farmers Bills For Inter-State Trade, Contract Farming [Read Bills]

first_imgNews UpdatesLok Sabha Passes Farmers Bills For Inter-State Trade, Contract Farming [Read Bills] LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK17 Sep 2020 9:58 PMShare This – xThe Lok Sabha on Thursday passed the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020 and the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020, by voice vote. These Bills, already in force as Ordinances, seek to facilitate intra-state and inter-state trade of farmers’ produce and execution of agreements…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginThe Lok Sabha on Thursday passed the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020 and the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020, by voice vote. These Bills, already in force as Ordinances, seek to facilitate intra-state and inter-state trade of farmers’ produce and execution of agreements between farmers and buyers, prior to the production/ rearing of any farm produce. Parliamentary Debate The Bill was widely opposed in the Lower House for its potential abuse by the private sector, leading to further exploitation of the farmers. Some of the key issues raised during the debate are listed thus: Parliament is not competent to enact a legislation on the subject of Agriculture since it falls under the State List at Entry No. 14 under Schedule VII of the Indian Constitution.Bills have the effect of privatizing the agricultural sector which will be detrimental to the farmers’ interest in the long run; privatization invites black marketing, hoarding and profiteering.Farmers have minimal bargaining power and there’s a massive potential for exploitation by powerful, profit-oriented private sector companies.By de-regularizing the agricultural sector, the Bill diminishes state control which not only affects the state Government’s revenue but also renders them incapable to regulate in case the private sector resorts to unscrupulous practices.The Dispute Resolution mechanism proposed by the Bills is very complicated for the farmers.Farmers are not trained electronic trading and thus, they shall be highly prone to frauds. With respect to ‘Contract Farming’ as proposed by the latter Bill, the Members apprehended that the Private sector may ‘bulldoze’ the farmers into entering unfair contracts, for prices below MSP. It was further highlighted that whereas farmers need to be protected by market fluctuations induced by natural calamities such as epidemic, floods, drought, earthquake, etc., they shall not be able to seek aid from the Private Sector as they shall be exempted from any liability under the Force Majuere clause under Contract law. It was also stated that in case of non-performance of Contract by the private sector, farmers shall be susceptible to prolonged litigation against big corporates, having deep pockets. Responding to the debate, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar firstly clarified that these bills would not have any impact on the Minimum Support Price (MSP) mechanism which would continue. He then assured that the legislations will benefit the farmers by increasing competition among traders, thereby enabling them to bargain at a higher price. Further, the farmers shall have an elaborate market as they will be able to trade freely anywhere in the country. On involvement of private sector in agriculture, the Minister said that it shall enhance farming as farmers will gain access to better infrastructure and modernised services. He said that the bill will ensure that many services will reach small farmers. “Contract will not lead to taking over of land. If the corporates build some infrastructure, it will only benefit the farmer in the end,” he added. So far as the Dispute Resolution mechanism is concerned, he explained that the Sub-Divisional Magistrate will ask both the parties in dispute to appoint two panch each who try to reach a solution. However, in case the dispute is not resolved. The SDM will resolve the issue himself. He further said that in case the matter goes to the court and an unfavourable order is passed against the farmer, then he shall be liable to pay only the actual disputed amount and that his land/ property shall not be attached. Tomar also added that the contracts signed under this law will also have a provision that if prices at time of sale are more than what was agreed to at the time of contract, then the farmers will get a certain percentage of the additional profit. Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020 This Bill permits sale and purchase of farmers’ produce at remunerative prices through ‘competitive alternative trading channels’ to promote efficient, transparent and barrier-free inter-State and intra-State trade of farmers’ produce outside physical premises of markets notified under various State legislations. Trade of farmers’ produce It permits trade of farmers’ produce outside: physical premises of market yards under the state APMC (Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee) Actsother markets notified under the state APMC Acts. Such trade can be conducted in an ‘outside trade area’, i.e., any place of production, collection, and aggregation of farmers’ produce including: (i) farm gates, (ii) factory premises, (iii) warehouses, (iv) silos, and (v) cold storages. Electronic trading It permits electronic trading of scheduled farmers’ produce in the specified trade area. To give effect to the same, following entities may establish and operate an electronic trading and transaction platform: companiespartnership firmsregistered societies (having PAN) farmer producer organisationagricultural cooperative society Market fee abolished It prohibits state governments from levying any market fee, cess or levy on farmers, traders, and electronic trading platforms for trade of farmers’ produce conducted in an ‘outside trade area’. Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020 This Bill seeks to provide for a national framework on farming agreements that empowers farmers to engage with agri-business firms, processors, wholesalers, exporters or large retailers for farm services and sale of future farming produce at a mutually agreed ‘remunerative price’. Farming agreement The Bill provides for a farming agreement between a farmer and a buyer prior to the production or rearing of any farm produce. Minimum period of agreement: one crop season/ one production cycle of livestock Maximum period of agreement: five years (unless the production cycle is more than five years)) No farming agreement shall be entered into by a farmer in derogation of any rights of a share cropper. Pricing of farming produce The price of farming produce and process of price determination should be mentioned in the agreement. For prices subjected to variation, a guaranteed price for the produce and a clear reference for any additional amount above the guaranteed price, including bonus or premium, must be specified in the agreement. Registration Authority The Bill establishes a Registration Authority to provide for e-registry and for registration of farming agreements. ] Dispute Settlement The Bill also provides for conciliation and dispute settlement mechanism for settlement of disputes under the farming agreement. Resolution Process The Conciliation Board shall have a fair and balanced representation of parties to the agreement. At first, all disputes shall be referred to the board for resolution. If the dispute remains unresolved by the Board after thirty days, parties may approach the Sub-divisional Magistrate for resolution. Right to Appeal Parties will have a right to appeal to an Appellate Authority against decisions of the Magistrate. Both the Magistrate and Appellate Authority will be required to dispose of a dispute within thirty days from the receipt of application. Penalties The Magistrate or the Appellate Authority may impose certain penalties on the party contravening the agreement. However, no action can be taken against the agricultural land of farmer for recovery of any dues. Linkage of farming agreement with insurance or credit The Bill provides that a farming agreement may be linked with insurance or credit instrument under any scheme of the Central Government or the State Government or any financial service provider to ensure ‘risk mitigation’ and ‘flow of credit’ to farmer or Sponsor or both; These Bills are being read together with the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, 2020 which allows the central government to regulate the supply of certain food items including cereals, pulses, potatoes, onions, edible oilseeds, and oils, under extraordinary circumstances (such as war and famine). The Government may impose stock limits on agricultural produce, only if there is a steep price rise (100% rise). The Bills will now be placed before the Rajya Sabha. Click Here To Download Bill [Free Trade & Commerce] Click Here To Download Bill [Contract Farming]Subscribe to LiveLaw, enjoy Ad free version and other unlimited features, just INR 599 Click here to Subscribe. All payment options available.loading….Next Storylast_img read more

School ipads and equipment stolen in Buncrana

first_img Google+ Homepage BannerNews Loganair’s new Derry – Liverpool air service takes off from CODA Important message for people attending LUH’s INR clinic Previous articleValuable jewellery taken in Raphoe burglaryNext articleWoman falls victim to distraction burglary in Letterkenny News Highland Facebook Pinterest School ipads and equipment stolen in Buncrana WhatsApp Google+ Twitter A quantity of school computer equipment has been stolen from a property in Buncrana. An investigation is continuing into the burglary which happened on Crana road between Saturday the 22nd and Sunday the 23rd of August.The matter was only recently discovered and reported to Gardaí.A building on Crana Road that is used by a local School was entered and a laptop, a projector, a router and 13 Apple ipads were stolen from it.Buncrana Gardaí are investigating – If anyone has come across any of these type of items for sale in suspicious circumstances or if anyone has any information that would assist with the investigation in any way, please contact them on 074-9320540.center_img Pinterest RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR By News Highland – September 15, 2020 WhatsApp News, Sport and Obituaries on Monday May 24th Twitter Nine til Noon Show – Listen back to Monday’s Programme Facebook Arranmore progress and potential flagged as population grows Community Enhancement Programme open for applicationslast_img read more