SC sends notice to Centre, as for response on agricultural laws within four weeks

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday issued notice to the Central Government seeking its response to a number of petitions challenging the constitutional validity of three recently disputed agricultural laws. A bench headed by Chief Justice SA Bobde has sought a reply from the Center on the notice within four weeks.

The farmer laws had created country wide protest. Farmers hit the streets to protest against the laws passed by the Centre, demanding to scrap the laws. The three laws – Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Price Assurance and Agricultural Services Agreement Act, 2020, Farmers Product Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Simplification) Act, 2020 and Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020, after the approval of President Ramnath Kovind came into effect on 27 September.

The bench was hearing petitions filed by Rashtriya Janata Dal Rajya Sabha member Manoj Jha, Congress Lok Sabha MP from Kerala TN Pratapan and DMK Rajya Sabha members Tiruchi Siva and Rakesh Vaishnav from Tamil Nadu. The bench also consists of Justices AS Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian.

It has been alleged in the petitions that the Agricultural Laws passed by the Parliament will put an end to the Agricultural Produce Market Committee system (APMC) made to ensure proper pricing of agricultural produce to farmers.

The Centre claims that the law will provide farmers to sell their crops anywhere and that the government is providing options to farmers. The MSP and government procurement will continue. The Farmers will be free from exploitation by intermediaries. The Food security of the poor will not be harmed. However, on other hand the protesting farmer has another thing to say. The reality of three farmer laws  is that there will be no declaration of MSP for all crops, determined by the Swaminathan formula of C2 costs plus 50 percent. Instead of eliminating middlemen, it will replace five layers of middlemen which will be filled by rural moneyed sections.

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