Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar on Friday said that the central government was not disappointed about repealing the three contentious farms laws, reported PTI.
“We introduced agriculture amendment laws,” he said, at the inaugural ceremony of an agriculture industry exhibition in Nagpur. “But some people did not like these laws...But the government is not disappointed, we moved a step back and we will move forward again because farmers are India’s backbone.”
After over a year of protests by farmers against the three agriculture laws, they were repealed on December 1.
Thousands of farmers had built tent cities at Delhi’s border points since November 2020, demanding that the Centre repeal the three laws that proposed to open up the country’s agriculture markets to private companies. The farmers feared that the policies would make them vulnerable to corporate exploitation and would dismantle the minimum support price regime.
During the protests, the government continued to claim that the three legislations were pro-farmers.
But on November 19, on the occasion of Guru Parab, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that his government would repeal the laws during the Winter Session of Parliament. The announcement came months ahead of the Assembly elections in Punjab.
At Friday’s event, Tomar also said that the agriculture sector attracted the least amount of private investment, adding that there needs to be more of it.
“The agriculture sector, despite being so big, did not receive this kind of opportunity,” Tomar said, according to PTI. “Today this sector receives most of the investment through government programs...through government purchase [of farm produce], subsidy on fertilisers, seeds and pesticides and other policies.”
The Union minister claimed that the current investments in the agriculture sector were benefiting traders, and not farmers.