Farm Reform laws are going to help Farmers & Support Indian Agriculture & promote Exports

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    Farm Reform laws are going to help farmers and support Indian agriculture.
    Farmer’s income and production will improve, deliberated Shri P K Swain,
    Joint Secretary, Marketing and Agriculture. Marketing Advisor, Min of
    Agriculture, Government of India in Virtual Meeting of Stakeholders on Farm
    Reform Laws – Submission of Joint Comments to SC Committee organized by PHD
    Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

    Shri P K Swain mentioned that we need to improve our exports, processing and
    ensure that there is a continuous increase in the income of farmers. The
    market needs to increase its capacity and APMC needs to reorient themselves
    as a service provider role so that they are increasing the existing volume
    by providing additional services that will benefit the farmers and the cost
    is minimized.

    Shri Vijay Sardana, Advocate High Court and Agriculture Policy Expert while
    giving major highlights of the new laws mentioned that these reforms are in
    the favor of increasing farmer’s income, reducing exploitation and middlemen
    interferences.

    Talking about the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and
    Facilitation) Act, 2020, he mentioned this reform permits inter-state trade
    movement of farmers’ produce beyond the physical premises of APMC markets
    and other markets notified under the state APMC Acts. It will also lead to
    direct and online buying and selling of agricultural produce. As per the
    Act, the State Governments are prohibited from levying any market fee on
    farmers, traders, and electronic trading platforms for trading farmers’
    produce in an ‘outside trade area. He further said that SDM has been
    empowered to provide solution in case of disputes. This will take off the
    load of litigation on the courts.

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    While giving an overview about the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection)
    Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020, he mentioned that
    this act creates a national framework for contract farming through an
    agreement between a farmer and buyer before the production of any farm
    produce. Provisions have been made for Risk Mitigation. The third amendment
    is the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020, as per this amendment,
    the Government of India regulates the production, supply, and distribution
    of a whole host of commodities it declares ‘essential’ to make them
    available to consumers at fair prices. He clarified that the law will not
    lead to hoarding by big businesses as is being perceived.

    Mr. Pradeep Multani, Senior Vice President, PHD Chamber of Commerce and
    Industry deliberated about the importance of the agriculture sector for the
    development of the economy. He mentioned that the Agriculture or the Farm
    Reform laws that have been adopted have the best of intentions for improving
    the farmers’ rights and enhancing their remuneration. However, the level of
    farmers’ agitation had led the Honorable Supreme Court to form a committee
    of experts to make recommendations and submit the report to the Supreme
    Court, the committee has adopted the democratic way of seeking inputs from
    all stakeholders.

    Mr. Multani further mentioned that PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry
    stands in complete solidarity with the government and pledges to extend
    wholehearted support, in whatever means required and possible, this is our
    way of contributing to the process of policy formulation.

    Mr. Pradeep Multani highlighted that farmers under the guidance of the
    scientists that have made it possible for us to be an exporter of food from
    a situation of scanty in the 1950s and 60s. India has a definite advantage
    in agriculture production and with little scientific and technological
    intervention, we also have the potential to be the global food hub as there
    still exists under-utilized capacities in agriculture productivity.

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    Mr. Nand Kishor Aggarwal, Chairman, Agriculture Committee, PHD Chamber of
    Commerce and Industry while sharing his industry perspective mentioned that
    there is a need to put forward facts and figures to understand the situation
    of farmers and accordingly formulate laws for their betterment. The industry
    stakeholders need to take responsibility to write to a committee made by
    Supreme Court to support them and, the reforms created are in the interest
    of the farmers. He appreciated the reforms and measures undertaken by the
    government towards the betterment of the farmers and increasing their
    income. 

    The meeting was moderated by Mr Mallika Verma, Director, Agriculture, PhD
    Chamber, and was attended by many industry stalwarts pan-India.