Discussion on Three Farm Laws and Ground Reality – Land to Market
Speakers: Prof. Vikas Rawal, Professor, Centre for Economic Studies and Planning, Jawaharlal Nehru University; Shri Siraj Hussain, Visiting Senior Fellow, ICRIER and former Secretary, Agriculture, Govt. of India; and Dr. Mekhala Krishnamurthy, Associate Professor of Sociology and Social Anthropology, Ashoka University ; Shri Devinder Sharma, Agriculture, Food and Trade Policy Expert
Moderator: Shri Suhas Borker, Convener, Working Group on Alternative Strategies and Editor, Citizens First TV (CFTV)
For more than three months, thousands of farmers have been protesting at Delhi's borders seeking a repeal of the new farm laws. The agitation has now fanned protests across Punjab, Haryana and western Uttar Pradesh. The farmers say that the three farm laws will erode their bargaining power, weaken a system of assured prices and make them vulnerable to exploitation by big agri businesses.
On the other hand, the government has maintained the laws aim to ease restrictions on farm trade by setting up free markets, allow traders to stockpile large stocks of food for future sales and lay down a framework for contract farming.
The negotiations between the farmers and the government have repeatedly failed and are in a deadlock. The Supreme Court has ''suspended'' the ''implementation'' of three farm laws "until further orders" in a bid to persuade farmers agitating against them to come to the ''negotiating table". The Supreme Court also set up a four-member expert committee to talk to farmers and report back. One member of this four-member expert committee has recused himself. Farmers’ groups, pushing for repeal, have said they won't appear before the committee. The stalemate continues.
What are the ground realities? Is there a way out of this imbroglio?
The webinar marks the 29th anniversary of the Working Group on Alternative Strategies
(Collaboration: Working Group on Alternative Strategies)