Kerala

State may move Supreme Court against farm laws

Kerala is likely to move the Supreme Court against the contentious farm laws passed by the Centre in September.

Agriculture Minister V.S. Sunil Kumar has submitted a file to Chief Pinarayi Vijayan's office urging the government to approach the apex court against the laws at the earliest. A final decision on the matter is expected shortly.

The State Agriculture Department has sought urgent intervention by the State government for moving the Supreme Court on the basis of legal advice received from the Law Department. The department questioned the constitutional validity of the laws on the grounds that they encroached upon the terrain of States since agriculture was a state subject under the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution.

The department had also explored the possibility of countering the contentious laws through legislation. The Law Department, in its advice, reportedly green-signalled both the options. However, the department is understood to have favoured the option of approaching the apex court.

The State government opposed the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020; the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020, calling them inimical to the interests of farmers.

Farmer organisations in the State had alleged that the laws, especially the provisions favouring contract farming, would jeopardise the nation's food security and surrender the sector and farmers to profit-seeking corporate entities.

The laws had also drawn strong protests from the Congress in the State.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2021 7:03:31 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/state-may-move-sc-against-farm-laws/article33259552.ece

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