LM NEWS 24
LM NEWS 24

Govt To Amend Farm Laws, Share Draft Only During Talks

By Pragya Kaushika

New Delhi [India], December 7 (ANI): The Union government’s unrelenting attempts to resolve the farmers’ agitation through dialogue is making little headway with few of the farmer unions remaining adamant on their demand to repeal the new agriculture laws.

While farmers expect the government to send the new draft with amendments to them before they come for the next round of meeting on December 9, sources in the government said that the draft will be discussed only at the discussion table.

“It doesn’t make any sense to send in draft before they come for discussion. They are most welcome to come and discuss and debate the amendments they want in the laws,” added the source.

The farmers had claimed that once the government sends the draft to them, they will first discuss it among themselves before coming for the meeting.

The government, in a bid to make headway in the discussions, agreed to ‘as many amendments’ as demanded by the farmers. “The farmers seemed like a divided lot with few convinced of laws and government’s intention to make amendments on their suggestions whereas there was a handful of those who remained adamant on the repeal of farm laws,” added a source.

Sources stated that farmers came with a list of demands not just demanding amendments but also amenities they expect the government to provide to facilitate their protest and agitation.

“They want mics, street lights, sanitation and other things to be able to communicate with others effectively,” added the source.

To assuage the agitated farmers, the ministers committed to making amendments brought in as demands. “To this, one of the leaders quipped that so many amendments would be like changing all the sweets inside the box and yet keeping the box. So why not change the box,” stated the source.

The fifth round of talks remained inconclusive with government and farmers agreeing on drafting a new set of amendments to the existing farm laws.

Hundreds of farmers have been protesting on different borders of the national capital since November 26 against the three newly enacted farm laws–Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020, and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020.

Farmers’ leaders have held several rounds of talks with the government but all of them remained inconclusive so far. After the fifth round of talks, Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar has called another meeting on December 9. (ANI)

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