New Delhi: Amid fierce uproar by the Opposition parties, contentious Farm Bills– 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, were tabled in Rajya Sabha by Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmer Welfare Narendra Singh Tomar on Sunday.Also Read - Congress to Reserve 40% Tickets for Women in Upcoming UP Assembly Elections: Priyanka Gandhi Vadra in Lucknow
“The Bills are historic & will bring a change in the lives of the farmers. The farmers will be able to freely trade their produce anywhere in the country. I want to assure the farmers that these Bills are not related to Minimum Support Price”, said the Ariculture Minister in the Upper House. Also Read - Will Consider, Says Rahul Gandhi On Request Of Senior Leaders To Become Congress President
The Congress party, on the other hand, called the Bill ‘ill-conceived and ill-timed’. Speaking the Rajya Sabha, Congress MP Partap Singh Bajwa, said, “We will not sign on this death warrant of farmers.” Also Read - Manmohan Singh Health Update: Former Prime Minister's Condition Stable, Says AIIMS Official
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has referred the Bills as farmers’ shields. After inaugurating the Kosi mega bridge on Friday, he claimed that it was necessary to bring these Bills to protect farmers from middlemen. “Farmers are now given new independence in agriculture. Now, they will have more options and opportunities to sell their produce”, PM Modi had said.
On the other hand, reports have claimed that the Monsoon Session is likely to be cut short after 30 lawmakers tested positive for the novel Coronavirus. The Parliament proceedings began on September 14 and was supposed to go on till October 1. But, it is likely to be curtailed and may end by the middle of next week in the wake of rising COVID-19 cases.
The ruling NDA is likely to have the advantage if the bills are put to vote. With the majority mark set at 122, the current absolute strength of the Upper House is 243. The ruling party BJP has total 86 members in Rajya Sabha, Congress has 40, TMC 13, Samajwadi Party 8, TRS 7, BJD 9, JDU 5, AIADMK 9, DMK 7 and RJD 5. Out of 245 members in the Upper House, two seats are vacant.