India / President gives assent to 3 farm Bills amid farmers' protests

Zoom News : Sep 27, 2020, 07:11 PM
New Delhi: Even as farmers and opposition parties continue to protest against the controversial farm bills, President Ram Nath Kovind on Sunday gave his assent for the three bills passed by the Parliament.

The move comes at a time when farmers, particularly those in Punjab and Haryana, are protesting against the three bills — The Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020; The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020; and The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, 2020.

These bills were passed by Parliament amid much drama during the recently concluded monsoon session.

The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), NDA's oldest ally, had on Saturday quit the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) over the contentious farm bills issue.

Farmers have expressed apprehension that the Centre's farm reforms would pave a way for the dismantling of the minimum support price system, leaving them at the "mercy" of big companies.

On Friday, farmers in Haryana and Punjab took to the streets and blocked roads and highways by parking tractor-trolleys. A group of 31 farmer outfits in Punjab have already announced an indefinite “rail roko” protest from October 1. On Sunday too farmers continued to squat on the tracks in different parts of the state raising slogans against the BJP-led government while demanding the rollback of the Bills.

On Friday, a near total "bandh" was observed in Punjab while farmers blocked several roads in Haryana.

The movement of trains remained suspended in Punjab on Saturday as farmers have extended their “rail roko" agitation by three days till September 29.

In Punjab, the call for the “rail roko" agitation was given by the Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee after which 20 trains were partially cancelled and five short terminated till September 26 by the Railways.

On Saturday, farmers squatted on the Amritsar-Delhi rail track and went shirtless in protest against the Bills.