Tuesday 20 October 2020

Declare Punjab ‘principal market yard’: Sukhbir Badal

- Posted on 25 September 2020

CHANDIGARH, SEP 25 : SAD President Sukhbir Singh Badal has demanded that the whole of Punjab should be declared a ‘principal market yard’ for agricultural produce to ensure that laws based on the three passed agricultural Bills do not apply in the northern state.

“This is the best, the quickest and the most effective way for Punjab to pre-empt the application of the Centre’s latest anti-farmer Bills in the state because these will not apply to ‘principal market yards’ declared by any state government. Therefore, the Punjab government must act without delay,” the Shiromani Akali Dal leader said in a strongly-worded statement.

Badal asserted that the state government has the power to notify the whole state as a principal market yard as well as sub-market yards.

The Bills exempt these yards or marked areas from the jurisdiction of the proposed legislation, he added.

The SAD, an NDA ally, had announced a statewide ‘chakka jam’ for three hours across Punjab on September 25.

A delegation of SAD had even met President Ram Nath Kovind and urged him to withhold assent to the contentious farm Bills.

The SAD has been a longstanding ally of the ruling BJP. SAD’s Lok Sabha MP and Sukhbir’s wife Harsimrat Kaur Badal had resigned from the Union Cabinet on September 17, citing her party’s opposition to the three Bills.

The Bills are Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020, The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020, and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, 2020.

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