Hyderabad: The former TRS MP and Nizamabad MLC, Kalvakuntla Kavitha, stood in solidarity with farmers protesting the farm Bills and took part in a massive protest at Tekriyal village on National Highway 44 on 8 December.
The Bill makes the farmers weak and does not take into consideration the stability and security of our farmers, she said, adding that the absence of MSP in the Act makes way for private players to enter the agricultural sector. Maintaining that the three crucial aspects of agriculture are seeds, fertilisers, and farm produce, she said, "Access to seeds and fertilisers have been given to private players that has visibly led to an unregulated market. If farm produce is also opened for private sector then we can foresee the future will be the same."
Ms. Kavitha, the daughter of Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao, stated the example of Bihar where the abolition of market committee has paved the way for market prices lower than the MSP which is not in the interest of farmers. She further said that corn is the primary produce of Telangana and the TRS government set ₹1,800 as MSP which varies drastically in other states from ₹1,000 to ₹1,200. If the government wants to pursue 'One Nation, One Market' then the Modi government must ensure 'One Nation, One Market, One MSP' policy which is the primary demand of the TRS party, too, she added.
The TRS leader said her party has opposed the three farms Bills since they were tabled in the Parliament and TRS still stands with the farmers and supports their call for Bharat Bandh. "The BJP government must ensure that nothing is sold below MSP. This will instill a sense of security among the farmers and in turn ensure food security within the country," Ms. Kavitha said.
Stating the example of the US which is a credit-based agriculture market, she said that only 14 paise reaches a farmer in the country. "However, in a country like ours where the focus is on increasing the income, we must ensure MSP, smooth working of APMC, and increase subsidy," she said, adding that if the government wants to transform the agricultural sector then the focus must be on developing infrastructure and meeting the needs of the society.
"While research says that India needs over 40,000 agriculture markets in proportion to our population, we only have 6,500 markets at the moment. Keeping this in mind, if the Centre intends to change the entire situation in the existing manner, our farmers will be the worst hit," she added.