Prime Minister Modi Chaired the Union Cabinet on June 3, 2020, Several landmarks and historical decisions were taken in the meeting, which will go a long way in helping India's farmers while also transforming the agriculture sector
Essential Commodities Act a historic amendment was approved by the Cabinet, a visionary step towards the transformation of agriculture and raising farmers' income.
As India has become a surplus in most agricultural-commodities, farmers are getting better prices due to lack of investment in cold storage, warehouses, processing and export as the entrepreneurial spirit gets dampened due to hanging sword of Essential Commodities Act
This act will be a massive benefit for rural India, With the amendment to Essential Commodities Act, commodities like cereals, pulses, oilseeds, edible oils, onion and potatoes will be removed from the list of essential products. This will eliminate fears of private investors of excessive regulatory interference in their business operations.
The Government has also safeguarded the interest of consumers while liberalising the regulatory environment, has also ensured that the benefits of consumers are protected.
It has been provided in the amendment, that in situations such as war, famine, extraordinary price rise and natural calamity, such agricultural foodstuff can be regulated.
This amendment in the act will help both farmers and consumers and will bring in price stability.
It will create a competitive market environment and also prevent the wastage of agricultural products due to lack of storage facilities. This will also lead to barrier-free trade in agricultural production.`
Cabinet approved 'The Farming Produce Trade and Commerce', "The Ordinance will create an ecosystem where the farmers and traders will enjoy the freedom of choice of sale and purchase of agri-produce. It will also promote barrier-free inter-state and intra-state trade and commerce outside the physical premises of markets notified under State Agricultural Produce Marketing legislations. This is a historic-step in unlocking the vastly regulated agriculture markets in the country" states Prime Minister's Office
Farmers will also be able to do electronic trading in transaction platform for ensuring a seamless trade electronically, reduce marketing costs for the farmers and help them in getting better prices.
This will undoubtedly lead to One India, One Agriculture Market and will lay the foundation for ensuring golden harvests for our hard-working farmers.
The Union Cabinet also approved 'The Farmers Empowerment and Protection Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Ordinance, 2020'. Farmers can now engage with processors, wholesalers, aggregators, wholesalers, large retailers, exporters etc., on a level playing field without any fear of exploitation, and there will be no risk of market unpredictability from the farmer to the sponsor and also enable the farmers to access modern technology and better inputs. It will reduce the cost of marketing and improve the income of farmers. Farmers will get access to technology and advice for high-value agriculture and get a ready market for such products, will now engage in direct marketing, thereby eliminating intermediaries resulting in full realisation of price.
The Government has also announced the various provision of concessional credit for the welfare of farmers through Kisan Credit Cards, financing facility for agri-infra projects, Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana and other measures to strengthen fisheries, vaccination against Foot & Mouth Disease and Brucellosis, Herbal Cultivation promotion, boost to beekeeping, Operation Green etc. as a part of the Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan to provide a boost to those engaged in agriculture and allied activities.
"Through PM KISAN, over 9.54 crore farmer families (as on first June 2020) have benefited and an amount of Rs. 19,515 crore has been disbursed so far during the lockdown period. An amount of Rs. 8090 crore has been paid during the lockdown period under PMFBY". Prime Minister office said