Senior Trade Unionist and Congress Leader M.M.Singh Cheema demanded a rollback of the Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Ordinance, 2020, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Ordinance, 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Ordinance, 2020 as NDA Government has tabled these ordinances as bills for debate and passage during the current Monsoon session.
Mr.Cheema has dubbed the proposed legislations as "corporate agriculture bills" and has claimed that "these bills have been framed under instructions from big agribusiness corporates who seek to dominate the Indian food and agriculture business"."These bills are a big blow to both farmers and consumers, and demand of entire peasantry is their immediate withdrawal
Mr.Cheema stated that these ordinances seek to provide barrier-free trade for farmers' produce outside notified farm mandis, and empower farmers to enter into farming agreements with private players prior to production for sale of agri-produce which itself is a Mirage.
Mr.Cheema said, "It is farmers who feed the nation,today, the prime minister has forgotten the farmers and is at the service of big corporates. The farmers will not accept these three corporate agriculture bills.
Mr.Cheema further stated that pompous names of the bills themselves were 'highly misleading', and these should be renamed as "APMC Bypass Bill", "Contract Farming Promotion Bill" and "Food Hoarding by Corporates Bill".
Mr.Cheema while expressing his apprehension that "If the government amends the Essential Commodities Act, any regulation on stock limits, purchases and supply of food commodities will be removed, allowing the corporates to hoard unlimited quantities of food commodities and dominate the agriculture markets.
Mr.Cheema further clarified that Farmers and farmer producer organisations never had any such limits under ECA, so it is wrong to say that farmers will get any new freedom under the act. It is the corporates, who get the freedom to hoard food supplies," which is very dangerous for farming community.