THREAD:

THE CALLOUS CALCULATION BEHIND THE 3 FARMERS' BILLS:

Eventually this (Farm Bill) will come back to destroy the urban middle and lower middle class via sharply higher food prices and shortages. 1/18

#ISupportBharatBandh #BharatBandh
For sure, the agricultural sector in India needs deep rooted reforms. And i mean reforms, not merely cutting the legs from under the farmers and poor in India, which is the explicit intention of the 3 Farm Sector Bills and..2/18

#ISupportBharatBandh #BharatBandh
..the administrative announcement removing onions, pulses, rapeseed oils and other essentials from the Essential Commodities Act purview. 3/18

#ISupportBharatBandh #BharatBandh
1. Why?

Why did Modi government move with such alacrity on the dismantling of APMC (for sure, this Bill will eventually lead to the demise of APMC system, good or bad it has provided vital protection to the farmers in states where it has been honestly implemented) 4/18
The answer is simple - the govt realized that one of the heaviest commitment of funds is to purchase of agricultural produce at the MSP.

So if you dismantle the APMC, then you can pretend that you have deregulated the markets n don't have to purchase any produce. 5/18
2. What's the long term implication?

The MSP has formed a safety layer for farmers. Has it been universally applied? No, it hasn't been. Has the APMC been fault-free? No. But this Bill doesn't improve their functioning nor does it address their flaws or expand coverage. 6/18
It simply says "let markets take care".A philosophy similar to their attitude about Railways. We all know how well the "markets" have functioned in such cases (Enron n California energy markets, privatizn fiasco of British Railways,privatizn n decimation of US Railways, etc) 7/18
In case of APMC, MSP, etc it has made India self sufficient in food grains. FCI godowns r overflowing with foodgrains. Modi सरकार has benefitted from this procurement since the free/ subsidized foodgrains is the ONLY DAMNED THING that's kept people alive in this pandemic. 8/18
3. Keep your eye on the ball.

Like in the case of CAA, the original legislation wasn't the entire story. The real poison was in the administrative stuff that was the logical next steps, viz NRC and the modified and poisoned NPR. 9/18
Similarly, here the APMC legislation was accompanied by two other Bills, which will put small and marginal farmers into servitude, and the de-notification of essential goods like cooking oil pulses and onions from Essential Commodities Act. 10/18
This now allows anyone to hoard any quantity of these items without any restrictions.

4. What comes next?

The dismantling of the agricultural protections will be invariably followed up by the dismantling of MSP n eventually, the PDS which is the real intention of d govt ..11/18
..since that's the ONLY way the govt can remain solvent.

These steps will follow the current Bills as surely as night follows the day n NRC followed the CAA. It's the same gaslighting. It's the same set of stupid lies. It's the same bait and switch. 12/18
It's the same subterfuge. It's the same chicanery.

5. What comes after that?

Wide fluctuations in food prices. Regional imbalances. Catastrophe for farmers. Wide changes in cropping patterns. And eventual erosion of food security for India as a nation. 13/18
Right now the urban dwellers r clueless n indifferent. But eventually this will come back to destroy d urban middle n lower middle class via sharply higher food prices n shortages.

Be realistic enough to know dat India can't sustain 65%of its population on 15%of its GDP. 14/18
So consolidation of agricultural holdings is a must, which are the most fragmented amongst all agrarian nations in the world.

Simultaneously, it's also true that this government's method of doing this is all wrong, and the timing couldn't be more cruel. 15/18
As India had been developing, more manufacturing n services jobs would have automatically pulled people away from agriculture n into other sectors. Over a longer period of time, as India transitioned to a middle income nation, d dependence on agriculture would have reduced. 16/18
But to do this now,wen there r no jobs n millions have been newly rendered unemployed n wen poverty is rising,is cruel n unconscionable.

Agricultural sector overhaul being undertaken now is d equivalent of badly designed/implemented GST that's now d bane of india's economy.17/18
This post is written by @alok_jagdhari on FB. 18/18

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