No doubt, the opposition role in democracy is very important as it shows the drawbacks of Government actions.
Although Farm Bill was passed in both houses even after misbehaviour with the Vice Chairman of Rajya Sabha and it was sent to the President of India for his consent.
As it is well known that the Constitution of India has given the right to the opposition to oppose any bill in the House so that it could be rectified to remove drawbacks.
If the Government is not ready to listen in Both Houses as the opposition doesn’t have sufficient seats to oppose there are other options to oppose from road to towns to villages. But every right has limitations which means that the opposition will behave in such a manner that none will be insulted or physically assaulted.
On 20th September 2020, Farm Bill was passed from the Lok Sabha and kept on the floor of Rajya Sabha. Opposition has made all efforts from parliamentary to unparliamentary manners on this bill including physical assault to the Vice Chairman of Rajya Sabha, Sh. Harshavardhan which is not accepted in a Democratic country like India.
The opposition has doubt that purchase of Agricultural products from Farmers at or above Minimum Support Price is not mentioned which would attract exploitation.
As the Vice Chairman of Rajya Sabha agreed to vote on this bill, MP of Trinamool Congress, Sh. Derek O. Brien, reached the podium and tore the rule book, the other MP tried to damage the mike that is visible in the video that an MP shows a slap to the Vice Chairman, Sh. Harshvardhan.
Although the Vice Chairman was protected by the marshall of the Rajya Sabha, however, this behaviour was certainly not supposed to be behaved.
Normally, the function of both houses is telecasted live which is watched by Indians as well as on foreign land. And the behaviour of these MPs to the Vice Chairman certainly derided the Parliament.
Indian Constitution and Parliament has its own value in the world community and India has always played a role of leader in crisis. The unruly behaviour of MPs in Rajya Sabha has certainly deteriorated the image of India as the 21st century is going to become the century of India and therefore, these types of incidents must be avoided at any cost in future.
Meanwhile, the Chairman of Rajya Sabha, who is also the Vice President of India, Sh. Venkiah Naidu has suspended these eight MPs of opposition for their unruly behavior which is the need of the hour. It will certainly send a lesson to other Legislative Members to behave in a parliamentary way and oppose in such a manner which is universally accepted.
The opposition may have reservations on this bill and therefore, it may be in mood to show the drawbacks to the Government. But it is also true that contract farming in India was started in Karnataka and Haryana in 2003 and 2007 respectively when Congress was in power. It means that this contract farming is not totally wrong but the bill may have some drawbacks which can be rectified through discussion.
India got independence on 15th August 1947 when the major population of this country was involved in agriculture. However, the condition of Farmers of this country doesn’t improve even after 73 years even India achieves top ranking in the field of Space, Software, Medicines, Tertiary, etc.
But its status in Agriculture is still poor and no youth of this country wants to become farmers because the income of Agriculture is meager. Even around 58 percent of the population is involved in Agriculture but the contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is merely 18 percent.
Although the Government of India executed several plans and policies to improve the condition of farmers which is not up to the level and therefore, a major change is required and this bill will provide new opportunities to the farmers to sell their agriculture products while sowing in the field through contract farming. This will certainly attract private investment and modern technology in agriculture which increases production as well as income of the Farmers.
On the other hand, the Prime Minister of India, Sh. Narendra Modi assured the Nation that Minimum Support Price will be continued, also shows the commitment of the Government of India to improve the condition of farmers.
No doubt, there may be confusion that there is no provision of sale of Agriculture products either above or at MSP. As the Agriculture Minister already clarified that MSP purchase by the Government of India will be continued, hence, opposition has to trust as the Government is bound to do once it is declared in the Parliament.
Even, the BJP will never act against the farmers as the election in Bihar is at threshold and therefore, the Government may never take risk to hurt the common men.
Although it can be rectified with the time as Lord Krishna said in Geeta “परिवर्तन संसार का नियम है” means “Change is the rule of the World”. Currently, the worst condition of farmers in India continues to exist and therefore, the major reforms in this bill will certainly improve the condition.
Rest hope for the best.