‘MVA govt. opposed to enacting farm, labour Bills’

Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar on Friday clarified that the Maharashtra government had no plans of implementing the contentious farmer and labour Bills passed by the Narendra Modi-led Central government.

Mr. Pawar’s statement in Pune came in the backdrop of protesting farmer outfits, who demonstrated against the Bills as part of the shutdown called by the Akhil Bhartiya Kisan Samanvay Samiti. “What was the need [of the Modi government] to pass these Bills in such a hurry? They do not seem to be beneficial to farmers. Several farmer outfits across the country have vehemently opposed them. The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), along with several other political parties, are strongly opposed to it as well,” said Mr. Pawar, speaking on the sidelines of a COVID-19 review meeting in the city.

He said while the Maha Vikas Aghadi government was currently studying the legalities, the fact that they were pushed through Parliament cast aspersions on whether they would ultimately be beneficial to farmers.

Growing opposition

Farmer outfits, including the Raju Shetti-led Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana (SSS) and the All-India Kisan Sabha (AIKS), staged protests across the State, burning copies of the Bills while raising slogans against the Modi-led government.

Protests were prominent in Kolhapur and Buldhana – both strongholds of the SSS, as well as Nanded, Jalna and Ahmednagar. “The AIKS has staged protests in 21 districts of Maharashtra on Friday. We have made a bonfire of the Bills and protested in front of tehsil and Collector offices while staging rasta roko. It is heartening to see that the ruling parties, the NCP, the Shiv Sena and the Congress are also participating wholeheartedly in these protests,” said Ajit Nawale, State Secretary, AIKS.

Dr. Nawale said the Centre had cleverly couched the Bills as a means of ‘freeing’ the farmers from the exploitative practices of the agricultural committees.

“However, in reality, the Centre is washing its hands of its responsibility of looking after the welfare of farmers by subjecting them to the whims of the corporates,” he said, adding that under these Bills, market committees are to be dismantled, which will thereby destroy the system of guaranteed prices to farmers.

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Printable version | Oct 26, 2020 11:41:49 PM |

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