Congress calls farm bill, a 'death warrant' for farmers

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Congress MP in Rajya Sabha
Congress MP in Rajya Sabha

New Delhi : Congress on Sunday called farm sector bills, two of which were placed in Rajya Sabha today, an attack on soul of farmers. Congress MP Pratap Singh Bajwa said his party would not sign "death warrant for farmers".

"Congress party rejects this bill... We will not sign on this death warrant of farmers... Farmers don't want this benefit that you claim are for them, then why are you trying to force feed them," Mr Bajwa said, adding that all farmers, particularly those in Punjab and Haryana, think these bills are an attack on their soul.

"Farmers are not illiterate. They understand that this is a way to do away with MSP (Minimum Support Price). Once this is passed, corporate houses will take over farmlands," the Congress MP said, adding that trade was how the East India Company and the Portuguese invaded India.

Congress and Shiromani Akali Dal are among the parties which have been against the farm bill which was cleared in Lok Sabha recently.

The unrest in Haryana and Punjab has been registered since the bill was passed in Lok Sabha. Farmers have been demanding that the bill must be repealed.

Farmers' unions have raised apprehensions that the bills discontinue government support in buying their produce and that this would leave them vulnerable in the open market. Though Prime Minister Narendra Modi had tweeted that the system of minimum support price would continue, he is yet to make a statement in the parliament - as was also pointed out by Mr Bajwa today after Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar moved the two agriculture bills.