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Farm Bill: Why Farmers In Punjab, Haryana Want Middlemen?

Recently there was a Bharat Bandh call given by farmers against new reforms bill on agriculture, but the bandh only happened in Punjab and Haryana.

Farmers in the rest of the country did not take to the streets.

Food Bowl Goes Against The Grain | Outlook India Magazine

Therefore, one may ask why the bandh took place only in Punjab and Haryana?

Let us talk about it.

Look, the new bill does away with middlemen, who have a lot of political leverage on the ground level. And most of them are patronaged by Congress, Akali Dal and other parties.

Under the APMC act in Punjab, a tax of 8.5 per cent is levied on farmers’ produce, which includes six per cent by the state, and 2.5 per cent commission for commission agents.

There are 36,000 middlemen in Punjab and they are earning Rs 1600 crore per annum and 3 lakh workers are making Rs 1100 crore per annum, under the APMC Act.

So, the doing away of the middlemen means, not only losing this big money, but also the political leverage they enjoy. Therefore, they have come out in the open to sponsor farmers protests.

Why Indian farmers are protesting against new farm bills | India | Al  Jazeera

The farmers in Punjab, on the other hand, are worried that the government would not buy their produce at MSP prices. However, the Prime Minister has on several occasions clarified on this by assuring that the government will continue to buy produce from them at MSP.

But, at the same time, he also clarified that the farmers are free to sell their produce to corporates or retailers like Reliance Fresh or Big Bazar, if they are getting better prices.

The farmers also must not invite fears that the APMC structure would collapse. That is not right. Under the Pradhan Mantri Gareeb Kalyan Yojana, 80 crore people are fed with grains every month apart from their usual ration supply because of the pandemic. So, the procurement will happen. So, this fear is imaginary.

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1 Comment

  1. Avatar Jitendra Kumar Sadh says:

    It’s a very good bill for farmer’s

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