Thursday, January 28, 2021

Punjab

SAD-BJP, Cong hell bent on ruining farmers under guise of farm reforms: Harpal Cheema*

PUNJAB NEWS EXPRESS | June 19, 2020 10:30 PM

CHANDIGARH: Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Punjab senior Leader and Leader of Opposition (LoP) Harpal Singh on Friday, terming the three ordinances passed by the Modi government at the Centre, in the name of farm reforms, , as a ill-advised step aimed at destroying the Minimum Support Price (MSP) of crops and the existing world class marketing structure in Punjab. He added both SAD-BJP and Congress governments were partners in the deadly game, detrimental to all sections of society, especially the farmers, farm laborers and ‘arhtiyas’ and others.

Harpal Singh Cheema addressed the media at the party headquarters here in Chandigarh on Friday. Prominent among those present on the occasion included President, Legal Cell, Punjab, Gian Singh Mungo, Co-organization in charge Gagan Deep Singh Chadha, President state Women's Wing Raj Lali Gill, party spokesman Govinder Mittal and other party leaders.

Elaborating more on the Punjab Agriculture Produce Markets (Amendment) Bill-2017 to the media with documentary evidence, Cheema said that Punjab Pradesh Congress President Sunil Jakhar, who was trying to mislead the people in the name of 'Jan Andolan' should come clean over the  compulsion that led the Capt. Amarinder Singh government to approve of the drastic amendments to the APMC Act, succumbing to the pressure of the Modi government. The LoP, terming the proposed protests by the Congress against the ordinances as nothing but a mere political propaganda to win eyeballs, said  the Modi government had taken over the farm sector of  Punjab and Haryana through these anti-farmers’ ordinances.

Harpal Singh Cheema said that the MSP of wheat and paddy, like maize, sugarcane and pulses, would become ineffective once the corporate houses entered Punjab agriculture sector through this safer route, by pushing in deadly ordinances / bills by the union and State Governments. He added that the move would farmers of Punjab with no option but to sell their produce at much low prices, while ‘Arhtiyas’, drivers, transport and others dependant on agriculture sector would be rendered jobless.

Cheema informed that when the Aam Aadmi Party had vehemently opposed the drastic amendments made by Captain government to the APMC Act on the floor of Punjab Vidhan Sabha and outside it, the government in the saddle had chosen to gag the voices of dissent.

The AAP leader, sharing the report of the Commission on Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP) on the recommendations of the kharif crop prices for 2020-21 with the media, said the CACP was designed to ensure smooth marketing arrangements for wheat and paddy to the farmers of Punjab and Haryana, saying that recommendations were set to abolish the MSP for crops.  Cheema added that the Badals had once again stabbed Punjab in the back by supporting these deadly ordinances to save the ministerial berth of Harsimrat Kaur Badal, in the manner Sukhbir Singh Badal during the Vajpayee government had done thereby depriving the state of special industrial packages and concessions, enjoyed by some other neighboring states.

Cheema termed the amendment to the Essential Commodities Act as an act detrimental to the farming fraternity and others associated with it, giving the leeway to certain corporate houses to legalise hoarding and black marketing in the state. This, he said, would lead to open plundering of both producers and consumers, accusing the Badals for playing an active role to demolish the federal structure of the country.





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