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Haryana Congress seeks special Assembly session to discuss farm Bills

Former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, who is the Leader of the Opposition in the state assembly, led a delegation of 20 other Congress MLAs and submitted a memorandum to Governor Satyadeo Narain Arya in this regard.

By: Express News Service | Chandigarh | September 18, 2020 10:59:43 pm
haryana protests, haryana farmers protest, Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce Ordinance, haryana news, indian expressAmritsar: Members of the Talmel Sangathan, an umbrella organisation of various farmers' unions, take part in an hour long 'Lalkar Rally' to press for their various demands, in Amritsar, Monday, Sept. 14, 2020. (PTI Photo) (PTI14-09-2020_000304B)

The Opposition Congress Friday sought a special session of the Haryana Vudhan Sabha to discuss the “impact and ramifications” of three farm sector Bills passed by the Lok Sabha with former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda saying that his party will move a resolution against the legislations in the House.

Hooda, who is the Leader of the Opposition in the state assembly, led a delegation of 20 other Congress MLAs and submitted a memorandum to Governor Satyadeo Narain Arya in this regard. The memorandum was accepted by Governor’s secretary G Anupama, as Arya is in self isolation after an aide tested positive for Covid-19.

“We request you to recommend to the Union government not to pursue the Bills recently passed in the Lok Sabha as these are against the interest of millions of small and marginal farmers. We request you to convene a special session to discuss the impact and ramifications of these…We urge upon the government to review and reconsider these measures as these are unlikely to deliver on the promises made to them. Agri-marketing should be left to the states as envisaged in the Constitution,” the Congress said in the memorandum.

It said any move to “disturb” the present procurement system may deepen “social unrest” amongst farmers of the state”.

Talking to reporters, Hooda said farmers are facing an existential crisis due to the three “black laws”, which will “take away” the protection provided to them. It is important that all parties raise their voice in the interest of the state’s farmers, he said.

Hooda said his party had given adjournment and calling attention proposals to discuss three “anti-farmer” ordinances promulgated earlier in the monsoon session of the assembly last month but the government denied discussion, citing that the chief minister, Speaker and several MLAs tested positive for coronavirus.

“A special session of the Assembly should be called (now) and these three Bills be rejected, on the lines of Punjab. These legislations should be discussed in the House so that people also know which party and member stands with the farmers,” Hooda said.

A resolution should be passed in the Assembly as agriculture and related market systems are in the jurisdiction of the state and the House has the legal and moral right to discuss these and ensure the will of people, he stressed.

“Laws that dismantle the existing market system and take away MSP guarantees are not acceptable to people and farmers of the state. Also, a Bill should be brought in the Assembly, in which farmers should be guaranteed MSP,” Hooda said.

“If a private agency buys a crop from farmer for less than the MSP, then it should be made a punishable offence,” he added, stressing that the price of produce should be calculated on the C-2 formula covering the labour, operational, capital, storage, transport and other charges as per the Swaminathan Commission.

The Congress leader also lashed out at the JJP, the alliance partner of the BJP in the state, saying if the party was farmer friendly, they should have parted ways by now. “It is clear that they are more interested in staying in power than fighting for the rights of farmers,” he alleged.

On Shiromani Akali Dal MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal resigning from the Union Cabinet in protest against the three Bills, Hooda said it was a case of too little, too late.

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