The Center does not want to form a committee on the minimum support price for crops and was “keeping the country in the dark” on the issue, farmer chief Rakesh Tikait said on Monday.
He also accused the Union government of not wanting to make MSP legislation “to help its corporate friends who buy crops from farmers at low prices and sell processed products at high prices”.
Recalling the run-up to the 2020-21 farmers’ protests against the now repealed farm laws in Delhi, National Union spokesman Bharatiya Kisan (BKU) said there was only one ” digital agreement” and an “exchange of papers”. ” between the group of farmers and the Centre.
Newspapers said farmers will be consulted on the policy in the future, but there was no consultation and the bills were introduced even though there were protests in different parts of the country, he said during an event at the Gandhi Peace Foundation in Delhi.
“The other issue was ensuring a minimum support price for crops. The government has long kept the country in the dark saying it is forming a committee, but the Samyukta Kisan Morcha does not name names ( for panel members),” Tikait says.
“When it was time to form a committee they said give us names and we will announce the panel. But it was not the committee for the MSP! What does that mean? does not want to form a committee for the MSP,” he claimed.
On July 19, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body for farmers’ unions, dismissed the government committee on the minimum support price, saying the “so-called agricultural leaders” who supported the now-repealed farm laws were among them. members, and said he would not. be part of the panel.
In its statement, the SKM alleged that the government included five of its “loyalists”, who openly defended the three “anti-farmer” laws, in the committee and all of them are either directly associated with the BJP-RSS or support their Strategies.
In announcing the repeal of three farm laws last November, Prime Minister Narendra Modi promised to set up a committee to discuss farmers’ demand for a legal safeguard on MSP.
The Ministry of Agriculture issued a notice in the official gazette announcing the committee in this regard. Tikait on Monday demanded that the MSP system be implemented nationwide.
“The government shows something on paper and buys crops at other rates. Central government friendly companies buy crops at cheap rates and resell them at high cost after processing. That is why the government does not want not legislate on the MSP,” Tikait asserted.
Citing his visits to Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir, among others, he highlighted the plight of farmers, vegetable and fruit growers to demand that the MSP be established on vegetables, fruits and dairy products as well. to prevent the “exploitation” of farmers by the company.
He said Bihar’s ‘mandi system’ shut down 17 years ago, leading many farmers and state workers to migrate to other places to earn a living.
“The people of Bihar who are now laborers and laborers had more land in their name than many of us. But they had to leave their homes because they were not getting fair rates for their crops. They left their families, homes and farms, and now they stay in one room while they work in the factories,” Tikait said.
The BKU national spokesperson said Bihar has become the first state where the Mandi law has been implemented and preparations are underway for a movement to take over the mandis there.
“While all this was being planned, a new government was formed in Bihar. We also met with the new government and told them that the sooner you leave this (Mandi Act) the better. Otherwise, Nitish Kumar will meet the fate of Uddhav Thackeray (former Chief Minister of Maharashtra),” Tikait said.
“During our meeting with the new government, we asked them that the first thing to do is to resume the mandis. We have a meeting on the 6th (September) during which consultations will take place on the revival of the mandi system in Bihar,” he said.
First post: STI