Telangana on Saturday saw small scale protests by farmers across districts against the three farm laws of the Union government that farmers allege benefits agri-corporates. Protests were also held in Hyderabad, where farmer organisations urged the Telangana government to consider amendments that will negate the three farm laws.
Farmer organisations in October had sent representations to the Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao and to the state Agriculture Minister S Niranjan Reddy asking them to enact amendments to the Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) Act. But there was no response from the leaders. Farmers wanted a clause inserted in the Act which would bring all transactions at unregulated market yards or mandis under the purview of the APMC Act.
The All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC) in a statement to the media said that the Telangana government should look at how states such as Punjab, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh rejected the farm laws.
Farmers across Punjab, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh are presently protesting against the three Acts and have blocked all exit and entry to Delhi. The farmer’s organisations are demanding the Union government repeal the three laws that were passed in Parliament in September.
Protests are also taking place across districts in Telangana on a small scale. The protests held at Gun Park in Hyderabad had over 50 persons in attendance on Saturday morning. A similar protest is also being held in the evening.
Kiran Vissa of the Rythu Swarajya Vedika, said, “All farmer organisations in the state welcomed the TRS government’s stand of rejecting the three Union farm bills (in Parliament). But they should consider passing a resolution in the Assembly, a symbolic gesture against the laws. The TRS government should consider negating the farm laws as Punjab, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh governments had done. The Maharashtra government is also considering negating the bunion farm laws through amendments,”.
In October, Punjab became the first state to reject the Union government’s farm laws, by passing four new farm bills in the state Assembly. Rajasthan and Chattisghar too soon followed suit. Ajith Pawar, the Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra, had also categorically said that the farm laws will not be implemented in their state.
The three farm laws that the farmers are protesting against are the Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020.
In Telangana, various organisations such as the Rythu Swarajya Vedika, All India Kisan Mazdoor Sabha, Telangana Rythu Sangham, Telangana Rashtra Rythu Sangham have joined hands to protest against the Union farm laws. The farmers are hopeful that the TRS government will follow the states that rejected the farm laws.
The Telangana Agriculture Minister was unavailable for comment.