ITANAGAR, Sep 23: The Arunachal Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) has opposed the three new farm bills passed recently and extended support to the farmers opposing the bills.
The Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill were passed by both the houses of parliament amid protests by opposition parties like the Congress, TMC, DMK and the Left, as well as some farmer groups who have called the bills “anti-farmer.”
On the other hand, the government has said that the bills will make it easier for the farmers to sell their produce directly to private buyers and enter into a contract with private companies which will stimulate growth.
Addressing a media briefing at the Rajiv Gandhi Bhawan in Itanagar on Wednesday, party president Nabam Tuki said that the three bills are “against the interest of farmers.”
“I being a son of a farmer, I can say that the bills are going to affect rural local farmers, particularly in states like Punjab and Haryana,” he said.
He lambasted the BJP government at the Centre for not consulting the stakeholders or the state governments before coming up with such bills.
“They cannot simply change the system which has been flourishing since the time of Independence,” he said.
Tuki said that the Congress will support opposition to the bills until they are “revoked, reviewed, repealed and made as pro-farmers law.”
Series of programmes in support of the farmers are being organized across the country. An online campaign ‘speak-up for farmers’ will be organized on 26 September, and Kisaan Majdoor Bachao Diwas will be held on 2 October.
The congress president informed that a state level mass signature campaign will be held from 2 to 31 October to gather support for the movement which will be then submitted to the president of India for consideration.
“It is an urgent and emotive issue. The Congress will strongly stand behind the farmers. And we hope that the president will definitely safeguard the interest of the farmers,” he said.
On the assurance by Prime Minister Narendra Modi that the MSP will be increased, Tuki said “it should be given in writing.”
“Make it a law. Those are just verbal assurances,” he said.