Farmers' Protest: Supreme Court-appointed panel to hold first meeting today
New Delhi, Jan 19: The Supreme Court-appointed committee to resolve the impasse over the ongoing farm laws will hold its first meeting today. The meeting comes even as farmers' groups this evening said they will not accept the committee, which according to them comprises members who had favoured the Centre's laws.
Earlier, the court had stayed the implementation of the farm laws till further orders and constituted a four-member committee to make recommendations to resolve the impasse over them between the Centre and farmers' unions protesting at Delhi borders.
However, Bhartiya Kisan Union president Bhupinder Singh Mann recused himself from the committee last week. Apart from Shetkari Sanghatana (Maharashtra) president Anil Ghanwat, agriculture economists Ashok Gulati and Pramod Kumar Joshi are the other panel members.
Thousands of farmers, mainly from Punjab, Haryana and western Uttar Pradesh, have been protesting at various border points of Delhi for over a month now demanding repeal of the three laws - the Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, and the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act.
Enacted in September 2020, the central government has presented these laws as major farm reforms aimed at increasing farmers' income, but the protesting farmers have raised concerns that these legislations would weaken the minimum support price (MSP) and "mandi" (wholesale market) systems and leave them at the mercy of big corporations.
The government has maintained that these apprehensions are misplaced and ruled out a repeal of the laws.