Resource centre on India's rural distress

An Expert Explains: Farm Acts and federalism -Faizan Mustafa

-The Indian Express

As Opposition and regional parties protest the contentious farm laws, now challenged in Supreme Court, engaging with the key question: Does the enactment of the laws violate the federal principle?

On Sunday, the President gave assent to the controversial farm Bills passed by Parliament last week. Amid protests by farmers’ organisations across the country, Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra, and Punjab have said they might not implement the new laws, Kerala and Punjab have declared their intention to challenge them in the Supreme Court, and a Congress MP from Kerala, Prathapan T N, has already done so.

* What are the broad arguments for and against the laws?

The government claims these Acts will transform Indian agriculture and attract private investment. The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020, provides for contract farming, under which farmers will produce crops as per contracts with corporate investors for a mutually agreed remuneration.

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