Only 25 of 201 recommendations of Swaminathan Commission were implemented in Modi government.

Special Report: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has once again given credit to his government for implementing all the recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission set up to improve the condition of farmers. However, documents obtained by The Wire show that only 25 recommendations have been implemented in the Modi government, whereas 175 recommendations were implemented in the UPA government.

(Narendra Modi. Photo: PTI)

new Delhi: The Swaminathan Commission’s recommendations are once again in the limelight amid the nationwide farmers’ agitation against the three controversial agricultural laws brought by the Modi government.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar recently claimed once again that the recommendations of the National Farmers Commission, known as the Swaminathan Commission, were kept in the files by the Congress-led UPA government and After eight years, they removed it and implemented it.

Addressing a conference in Madhya Pradesh on December 18, Prime Minister Modi in the context of the farmers movement said, ‘People talking about farmers, today people who shed false tears are very ruthless, this is a big proof of the report of the Swaminathan Committee. These people (Congress) sat pressing the recommendations of the Swaminathan Committee for eight years.

The Prime Minister had said, “The farmers used to agitate, protest, but did not shake the stomach water of these people. He suppressed the report for not spending too much on farmers. Our government considers farmers as the providers. We took out the report of the Swaminathan Committee thrown in a pile of files and implemented its recommendations. We gave MSP one and a half times the cost to the farmers.

However, this argument of the Prime Minister does not live up to the facts recorded in his files by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare. The ministry had planned to implement 201 out of the total recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission.

although The wire Official documents obtained by the government show that the government has claimed to implement 200 recommendations out of which only 25 recommendations have been implemented during the Modi government. The remaining 175 recommendations were implemented during the previous UPA government.

By the way, this claim of the Government of India is quite controversial whether these recommendations are really implemented on the ground or they are all limited to files only. In the time to come The wire Examining them will present some detailed reports.

The National Farmers Commission was formed on 18 November 2004 under the leadership of eminent agricultural scientist MS Swaminathan. It submitted its fifth and final report to the government on October 4, 2006. The aim of the report was to make agriculture a source of income and employment, along with bringing about a comprehensive and sustainable change in agriculture.

It had also formulated the ‘National Farmers Policy’ incorporating the key recommendations of the Commission, out of which a plan to implement 201 action points was made. The Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) was formed to oversee its implementation.

read this also: If the agricultural law is in the interest of the farmers, then why not the farmers organization in its favor?

According to the document, IMC has held a total of eight meetings so far, out of which only three have been held during the tenure of the Modi government.

Its first meeting was held on October 14, 2009, in which 201 outlines of recommendations were implemented. The second meeting of the IMC was held on June 3, 2010 and by then 42 recommendations were implemented and 159 were pending.

Similarly, the third meeting of the committee was held in June 2012 and till then 152 recommendations were implemented and 49 were pending. After this, its fourth meeting was held in September 2013 and fifth in January 2014. According to the record, 25 more recommendations were implemented during this period.

At the time of the Modi government in power in 2014, 26 of these 201 action points were to be implemented, out of which 25 have been implemented so far and one is pending.

In August 2015, the sixth meeting of ISMI was held. By then, 17 more recommendations were considered applicable and nine were pending. Its last meeting was held on 8 April 2019.

swaminathan report

(Source: Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare)

These figures also raise questions on the claims of the Agriculture Minister. In an interview to the Dainik Bhaskar newspaper, Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said about the farmer movements Of the Swaminathan Committee’s 201 recommendations, ‘200 have been implemented under Modi’s leadership’.

However, it is clear from the data presented in the above that according to the Ministry of Agriculture, only 25 recommendations have been implemented during the tenure of the Modi government.

He also said that the new laws are based on the recommendations of the National Farmers Commission. However, if we talk in terms of the ‘Farmer Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020’, the law allowing the purchase and sale of agricultural produce outside the APMC (Agricultural Produce Marketing Committee), then in the recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission It has been said that there is a need to bring changes in the APMC system immediately.

However, nowhere in this report has it been said that the central government can make a law about it. The commission had recommended the states to make changes in their APMC Act.

Out of these 201 recommendations, only one recommendation related to APMC was included, which was about the tax imposed in the mandis.

The commission had asked to implement it as a ‘service charge’ instead of ‘compulsory tax’, so that the facility which is used will pay the same tax or levy.

To support the new law, all the BJP leaders including the Prime Minister, Agriculture Minister are offering a sense of falsifying this tax and trying to garner public support on the agricultural law by insisting that the tax is not imposed in the so-called new system. .

although The wire Documents obtained by the Union Finance Ministry show that it was justified that the amount to be collected in the mandis is not tax, instead the APMC concerned provides services to the people there. For this, the Ministry had talked about imposing a uniform tax GST across the country. The Ministry of Agriculture has also supported it.

read this also: Are only farmers affected by the new agricultural laws?

There is also a demand of the farmers in the ongoing agrarian movement that the recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission should be implemented in full, in which the MSP was asked to pay one and a half times the cost. Although the government claims that they have implemented this provision, but the figures raise serious questions on it.

Apart from this, the Commission in its report gave detailed recommendations on various aspects of farming such as irrigation, land reforms, agricultural productivity, credit and insurance, food security, prevention of farmer suicides, agricultural market, employment in agriculture.

It may be noted that the three bills related to agriculture imposed by the Central Government – Farmer Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020, Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Price Assurance Contracts and Agricultural Services Bill, 2020 and Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill. , 2020- farmers are protesting.

Farmers fear that the government is ending the established system of providing minimum support price (MSP) through these laws and if implemented, the farmers will have to live on the mercy of the traders.

On the other hand, the BJP-led Modi government at the Center has repeatedly denied this. The government is calling these ordinances ‘historic agricultural reform’. He says that they are making an alternative system for the sale of agricultural produce.

Categories: India

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