Letters to the editor dated September 30, 2021October 1, 2021
The article ‘What have we learned from farmers’ protests?’ (September 30) rightly highlights the ‘woeful infrastructure’ in the villages for storing and handling the agricultural produce. This results in farmer getting poor prices for is crops.
The figure of 40 per cent quoted in the article for the farmers wanting to leave the occupation is low. Almost 90 per cent of the farmers would not want their children to stay in farming.
The only persons who are investing in farm lands are the businessmen, politicians and bureaucrats and owners of self-financing colleges. This keeps the land prices near major cities high.
The Govt must benchmark the income of a farmer with the remuneration of a Govt employee at a suitable level. A farmer holding the 15 standard acres and cultivating the most profitable field crop of sugarcane and using his entire family labour working would not make as much as peon does in Govt offices. And he would have no retirement benefits and health cover on retirement.
Farmers’ agitation against the three farm laws is going on fruitlessly because there is utter lack of resilience and willingness to develop understanding between them and the Centre.
This is intriguing because neither the laws are flawless nor are they so thoughtless so as to be repealed altogether.
The blockage at the borders of Delhi is costing the economy dear, so the farmers must stop being so rigid.
The Supreme Court may also expedite its verdict — the expert committee appointed by it to make recommendations has already submitted its report. This may break the deadlock.
The Apex Court is yet to deal with the reference before it over the farm laws. Though the govt still perceives it an intrusion of the judiciary in a matter that is purely under the purview of the Parliament and the executive, it must be feeling as relieved in being temporarily eased out of an impasse, largely of its own making.
If it had felt that the laws are in order and farmer friendly it could have pitched the proposals to the stakeholders of the agro sector with greater persuasion and finesse before tabling the Bills or dealt firmly with the agitations, now that it had become law. Evidently the government wanted to have the pie and eat it too — it needed the farmer vote bank as much as it needed to show its executive supremacy. But the UP elections may yet provide an uncomfortable twist. A sagacious government and an earnest farming fraternity ought to assist the Apex court in a modus Vivendi for a win-win outcome.
This refers to ‘WHO’s hot seat’ (September 30). The UN body had to cop a lot of criticism for its perceived lack of leadership during the Covid crisis last year.Even now the WHO is perceived to be soft on China on the inquiry regarding the pandemic’s origins.
Hence a thorough overhaul of the functional and organisational set-up of WHO is vital, for which a vibrant leadership is of crucial importance.
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