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'Watershed moment' in history of Indian agriculture: PM Modi on passing of farm bills

The Prime Minister says for decades, Indian farmers have been bound by various constraints and bullied by middlemen; these bills passed by Parliament will liberate farmers from such adversities, says the PM

twitter-logoBusinessToday.In | September 25, 2020 | Updated 10:05 IST
'Watershed moment' in history of Indian agriculture: PM Modi on passing of farm bills
Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Soon after Parliament gave its nod to the agricultural reform bills today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi hailed it as a "watershed moment" in the history of Indian agriculture. The PM said these bills will transform the agriculture sector and empower crores of farmers.

"A watershed moment in the history of Indian agriculture! Congratulations to our hardworking farmers on the passage of key bills in Parliament, which will ensure a complete transformation of the agriculture sector as well as empower crores of farmers," he tweeted.

The Prime Minister said for decades, Indian farmers have been bound by various constraints and bullied by middlemen. "The bills passed by Parliament liberate the farmers from such adversities. These bills will add impetus to the efforts to double the income of farmers and ensure greater prosperity for them," he added.

Also read: What are farm bills, who are opposing and why - an explainer

Calling for the need to bring reforms in the agriculture sector, the PM said "..now, with the passage of the bills, our farmers will have easier access to futuristic technology that will boost production and yield better results. This is a welcome step."

Clearing doubts over the MSP issue, PM Modi reiterated that the system of MSP will remain and government procurement will continue. "We are here to serve our farmers. We will do everything possible to support them and ensure a better life for their coming generations," he added.

The Rajya Sabha earlier today passed the Farmers' and Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020 and Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020, through voice vote amid protest by opposition MPs and farmers' protests across Punjab, UP and Haryana. The bills were passed in the Lok Sabha last week.

Also read: Farm bills passed in Rajya Sabha amid protests by opposition MPs

While introducing the bills in the Rajya Sabha, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said the two bills are "historic and will bring a revolutionary change in farmer's lives". He said these bills seek to remove restrictions on marketing farm products and allow cultivators to engage with private companies to sell their crops. "Farmers will get the freedom to sell their produce at any place and person of their choice," he said.

The bills have also faced staunch opposition from farmer bodies as well as from within the ruling coalition. Harsimrat Kaur Badal, the food processing minister from the Shiromani Akali Dal party, also resigned from the government last week.

Earlier today, KK Ragesh (CPI), Derek O'Brien (TMC), Trichi Siva (DMK) and KC Venugopal (Congress) moved resolutions for sending the two bills to a select committee of the House for consideration before they are taken up for passage. Congress MP Partap Singh Bajwa also termed the bills as "death warrant" of farmers. However, despite the opposition ruckus, the bills were passed in both the Houses.

Also read: Will not sign death warrant of farmers: Congress on farm bills

Also read: Farm bills 2020: 'Misinformation being spread that farmers won't get right prices,' says PM Modi

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