Kannada writer and activist Devanuru Mahadeva has said the farm laws enacted by the Union government were not only “anti-farmer”, but also an assault on “democracy, federalism and the Constitution”.
Participating in a farmers’ protest in Bengaluru on Monday, he said agriculture was a State subject and the Union government bringing about these wide-ranging fundamental reforms was an assault on federalism. He added that the way in which these laws were passed in Parliament, without consulting farmers, did not augur well for democracy.
Pointing out the dismal ranking of the country on the Global Hunger Index (at 95th among 107 countries for the 2015-2020 period), he said the farm laws coupled with proposals to cut down the Public Distribution System would also hit food security.
“We need to tell the government enough of poverty, hunger, and malnutrition. We don’t need an India where foodgrains are priced high, where rural masses lose agriculture and are pushed to the slums in cities,” he said. “Those in power seem to believe they know how to win elections... If we hit their arrogance in the elections, even they may develop some sensitivity towards the poor.”