Kerala

Govt. to mobilise opinion against RCEP

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To hold convention on Oct. 28

The State government expects to mobilise public opinion against the Union government’s move to enrol India in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), a free-trade pact involving 16 nations in the Asia-Oceania region.

As part of lodging the State’s protest against the move, the government is organising a public convention at the Nishagandhi auditorium here on October 28.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan will inaugurate the event, which will be attended by farmers’ organisations and representatives of various sectors.

Major concerns

To be organised under the auspices of the Agriculture Department, the convention will highlight the adverse and far-reaching impact that the FTA would have on all aspects of the economy, notably, agriculture, industry, fisheries, and small-scale trade.

The government also plans to pilot a resolution in the upcoming session of the Assembly and send a delegation to New Delhi to meet union ministers.

Leader of the Opposition Ramesh Chennithala has agreed to attend the convention, Agriculture Minister V.S. Sunil Kumar and Water Resources Minister K. Krishnankutty told a press conference here.

In unilaterally deciding to ink the pact, the BJP government has ignored the spirit of federalism, Mr. Sunil Kumar said.

“The provisions of the FTA have neither been discussed in Parliament nor with the States, which bear the brunt of such a decision. Introducing intense competition and price crash in the agriculture sector, it will push debt-stressed farmers to suicide. The RCEP will turn Kerala into a graveyard of farmers,” Mr. Sunil Kumar said.

Through unrestricted opening-up of the Indian market, the RCEP would usher in economic insecurity and largescale crisis in all sectors, including small-scale trade and dairy, Mr. Krishnankutty said.

The October 28 convention at Nishagandhi will begin at 2 p.m.

The Chief Minister will inaugurate it at 3 p.m.

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Printable version | Dec 12, 2019 11:07:17 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/govt-to-mobilise-opinion-against-rcep/article29780055.ece

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