Welcome to the official blog of the Law Offices of Kr. Vivek Tanwar Advocate and Associates, where we are dedicated to providing litigation support services for matters related to agricultural laws. In today’s blog post, we aim to shed light on the prevailing issues surrounding agricultural laws, the legal framework in place for their protection, and the steps we can take as a society to combat these acts. Join us as we explore this critical subject and empower you with the knowledge to protect your rights and safety.
India has a complex set of rules and regulations governing the agricultural sector. These regulations cover various aspects of agriculture, including land use, crop cultivation, trade, pricing, marketing, and more. Keep in mind that regulations can change over time, so it’s important to refer to official government sources or legal experts for the most up-to-date information. As of my last knowledge update in September 2021, here are some key agricultural rules and regulations in India:
- Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) Acts:
- APMCs are regulated by state-level legislation that governs the marketing and trade of agricultural produce. These acts establish mandis (market yards) where farmers can bring their produce for sale through a transparent auction process.
- Each state has its own APMC Act that outlines the rules for the functioning of mandis, including the collection of market fees, the role of intermediaries, and the protection of farmers’ interests.
- Essential Commodities Act:
- This Act allows the central government to regulate the production, supply, and distribution of certain essential commodities. It aims to ensure the availability of essential items to consumers at fair prices.
- The Act provides the government with the authority to control the prices, production, distribution, and storage of essential commodities during emergencies, such as war, famine, or extraordinary price fluctuations.
- Minimum Support Price (MSP) and Public Distribution System (PDS):
- The government sets MSPs for various crops to ensure that farmers receive a minimum price for their produce, providing them with a safety net against market fluctuations.
- The Public Distribution System (PDS) is a network of fair price shops that distribute essential commodities at subsidized prices to eligible beneficiaries.
- Land Tenancy Laws:
- Land tenancy laws vary across states and govern the rights and responsibilities of landlords and tenants. These laws regulate land use, lease agreements, rent, and eviction processes.
- Seed and Plant Varieties Laws:
- The Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Act, 2001, deals with the protection of plant varieties, rights of farmers, and the regulation of the commercial use of plant varieties.
- Fertilizer and Pesticide Regulations:
- The government regulates the manufacturing, distribution, and sale of fertilizers and pesticides to ensure their quality, safety, and proper usage.
- Forest Rights Act:
- The Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006, grants legal recognition to the rights of forest-dwelling communities over their traditional lands and resources.
- Contract Farming Regulations:
- In addition to the 2020 Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, contract farming is also regulated by state laws that address various aspects of contract farming agreements and protections for farmers.
These are just a few examples of the numerous agricultural rules and regulations in India. The agricultural sector is subject to both central and state-level laws, and they can vary significantly based on local contexts and needs. It’s recommended to consult official government sources and legal experts for the most accurate and current information.
As of my last knowledge update in September 2021, I provided information about the three significant agricultural laws that were introduced in India in 2020. However, to offer you a more comprehensive overview, I’ll provide a bit more detail about these laws and their provisions:
- The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020:
- This law allows farmers to sell their agricultural produce outside the physical premises of Agricultural Produce Market Committees (APMCs) or mandis. They can engage in intra-state and inter-state trade through electronic trading platforms.
- It prohibits state governments from levying any market fee, cess, or levy outside the APMC areas.
- The aim is to provide farmers with more choices and better price realization by promoting competition among buyers.
- The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020:
- This law facilitates contract farming, where farmers can enter into agreements with buyers, including agribusiness firms, processors, wholesalers, exporters, or retailers.
- The contracts specify terms and conditions for the supply of agricultural produce and the pre-agreed price.
- It aims to provide farmers with a more secure and predictable market for their produce and attract private investment into the agricultural sector.
- The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020:
- This law amends the Essential Commodities Act to remove certain agricultural commodities like cereals, pulses, oilseeds, edible oils, onions, and potatoes from the list of essential commodities.
- It allows for the imposition of stock limits on these commodities only under exceptional circumstances like war, famine, extraordinary price rise, and natural calamity.
- The aim is to promote investment and reduce price volatility by attracting private players to participate in storage, distribution, and supply chain activities.
These laws were introduced with the intention of modernizing India’s agricultural sector, expanding market access for farmers, and encouraging private investment. However, they sparked protests and concerns from farmers who feared that the new laws could undermine their bargaining power and potentially expose them to exploitation by big corporations. Many farmers demanded the repeal of these laws and the continuation of the existing support mechanisms provided by the government.
We are a law firm in the name and style of Law Offices of Kr. Vivek Tanwar Advocate and Associates at Gurugram and Rewari. We are providing litigation support services for matters related to agricultural laws..
Written By- Adv Arti Mudgil (P2167/2013)