Farmer’s bill 2020 contains the important provisions for small and marginal farmers who do not have the means to either bargain for their products to enable them to get them a better price and to invest in technology which helps to improve the productivity of the farms. The bill focuses on farmer’s protection and empowerment, farmer’s produce trade, and commerce which involves promotion and facilitation. The bill Farmer’s produce trade and commerce bill and Farmer’s (protection and empowerment) agreement of price assurance and farmers services bill 2020 has been passed by Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, both the houses of parliament.
The bill is for the welfare of small and marginal farmers of India as the provisions in the bill enable to increase in the availability of buyers. It allows them to trade in a free manner without any license or stock limit. By this, there is an increase in the competition among farmers that results in getting better prices for farmers. Bill aims to liberalize the trade. Small rural markets can prove to be an important alternative for agriculture marketing if provided with adequate infrastructure facilities.
IMPORTANT FEATURES OF THE BILL
The trade of the farmer’s produce which allows inter and intrastate movement of farmer’s produce. Under the bill, trade can be conducted outside the trade area also which includes any place of production, collection, aggregation of the farmer’s produce which includes warehouses, factory premises, cold storages, etc.
The bill also includes electronic trading of scheduled farmer’s produce. It facilitates direct and online buying, selling of farmer’s produce by the help of electronic devices and the internet.
There is the abolition of Market Fees under the bill which includes cess or levy on farmers, traders. Electronic trading platforms for the trade of farmer’s produce which is conducted outside the trade area.
A farming agreement is there between farmers and buyers which is prior to production, rearing of any farm produce. There is a time period for an agreement like for one crop season and the maximum time period is five years until the cycle of production is more than five years.
The price of the farmer produce should be there in the agreement. A guaranteed price for the product and clear mention of the additional amount which will be charged should be there. The process of price determination should be mentioned in an agreement.
Disputes settlement which involves a conciliation board for balanced and fair representation of parties. The dispute must be referred to the board for solving it. The dispute must be solved within thirty days from the receipt of the application. No action against the agricultural land should be taken for the recovery of any dues.
ELIGIBILITY FOR A FARMER’S BILL
The bill is for small and marginal farmers of India.
A farmer who has agricultural land comes under the bill.
OBJECTIVES OF FARMER’S BILL 2020
To provide an ecosystem where farmers and traders enjoy the freedom of choice related to the sale and purchase of farmer’s produce.
To promote efficient, barrier-free, transparent inter-state commerce of farmer’s produce.
It aims for the transformation of agriculture and to raise farmer’s income.
The bill is for the welfare of the farmers of India.
Aims for investment in technology by improving the productivity of farmer’s produce.
It empowers farmers to legislate with processors, wholesalers, large retailers, etc.
BENEFITS OF FARMER’S BILL 2020
• It gives freedom of choice to farmers related to the sale and purchase of the produce.
• It helps to unlock the vast agriculture markets in the country.
• More choices are open to farmers under this bill.
• Decrease in the marketing costs for farmers.
• Help to regional farmers for surplus produces to get a better price for it.
• An electronic trading in transaction platform.
• Ensures seamless trade electronically.
• Farmers will not be charged with any levy for sale for their produce.
• There will be a separate dispute resolution mechanism for the farmers.
• Improve the income of farmers.
Under the bill, access to technology will be there for farmers. The advice for the high value of agriculture and ready market for agriculture produce. Farmers will be able to engage in direct marketing. Farmers are provided with adequate protection. The reform in the agriculture sector will accelerate through the private sector investment in building the agriculture infrastructure and various supply chains for Indian farm produce in national, global markets. It creates opportunities in employment and would strengthen the economy. The sale, lease, and mortgage of farmer land is prohibited and protected against any recovery. An effective, efficient resolution mechanism is created which provides clarity in real-time redressal of disputes.
The bill basically aims to create additional trading opportunities to help get better prices due to competition in the market. It paves the way for the creation of One India, One Agriculture Market for ensuring the foundation of golden harvest for hard-working farmers of India.