New Delhi: As the ongoing farmer’s protest at Delhi border doesn’t seem to end anytime soon, the Supreme Court, on Monday, is holding a clutch of pleas hearing challenging Center’s new farm laws as well as the issues related to this prolonged agitation at Delhi borders. The bench will be headed by chief justice of India (CJI) SA Bobde. In its previous hearing, the apex court had observed that the protest should be allowed to continue “without impediment,” adding that it won’t interfere as “the right to protest is a fundamental right.”
The center has so far failed to negotiate with farmer’s union on its contentious farm laws that have been described as ‘anti-farmer laws’ by many farmer unions, and is believed to leave farmers at the “mercy of corporates”. The bill was passed in September last year which drove farmers mainly from Haryana and Punjab at Delhi boarders on November 26 to stage against these three farm acts.
Till now, total eight round of talks between the Centre and the farmer unions have taken place which appears to be heading nowhere as the Centre ruled out repealing the contentious laws while the farmer leaders are adamant to fight till death stating their ‘ghar waapsi’ will happen only after ‘law waapsi’.
However, the center has told the apex court that “healthy discussions” were going on and that there are good chance that both sides may come to a conclusion in the near future. The Supreme court had then adjourned the hearing till January 11, provided that a settlement between the two parties was possible through talks.
Meanwhile, today’s hearing is deemed significant as the Centre and the farmer leaders are scheduled to hold their next meeting on January 15.
In its December 17 hearing, the apex court had established that the ongoing agitation should be allowed to continue “without impediment”, as it is a fundamental right to protest.
Enacted in September, these three farm laws were projected by the Centre as major reforms in the agriculture sector that will remove the middlemen and allow farmers to sell their crops anywhere in the country. However, the farmers are apprehensive about the set of the new laws as they believe it would pave the way for eliminating the safety cushion of Minimum Support Price (MSP) and will also, do away with the mandi system, thus leaving them at the mercy of big corporates.
Meanwhile, the framers are gearing up to take the protest a notch up by taking out a mega tractor march in the National Capital on January 26, on the occasion of Republic Day, if the farm laws are not taken back.