Photo used for indicative purpose only. Source: Internet

Shimla, Jan 18

The farmers of states like Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Western UP, etc. are not the only ones fearing fall out of the new farms law passed by the Modi Government. Infact number of apple and fruit growers of the Himachal Pradesh are not immune to such non market forces (middlemen) outside the ambit of APMC.

Reports published during 2019 and 2020 highlight that a number of farmers including a MLA and former Minister have become victim of such non-APMC market forces. Read: Middlemen or the big supply chains which are being given free hand to deal directly with the farmers now are likely to benefit from such legislations being put in place.

An FIR lodged at Police station Jubbal on Sep 19, 2020 by 21 gullible farmers that they were duped by trio of middlemen who ran away after buying their crops making no payment, are now reported missing. The crime took place under the grab of non-APMC door to door marketing of apple crops in which 21 farmers were duped for Rs 39 lakh by the Trio Middlemen posing as apple commission agents.

Former Chief Engineer and prominent apple growers Devender Chauhan informed on Sep 30, 2020 that trio of three middlemen identified as Suchit Kumar, resident of Maranchi village of Gaya Bihar were missing after buying apple crop worth Rs 39 lakhs from 21 farmers with help of local commission agents who were not accessible so far. Read:

The alleged cheating of apple grower duped Jagdish Sharma who sold apple crop amounting to Rs 4.20 lakh,  Ramanand  Rs 2.90 lakh, Humanand Rs 2.74 lakh,  Kartar Singh and Kuldeep Kumar Rs 2.40 lakh each, Harish Kumar Rs 2.37 lakh,  Harish Kumar 2.09 lakh and Daleep Singh Rs 1.60 Lakh, and Roshni Devi Rs 1.56 lakh, Devinder Chauhan Rs. 1.12 lakh and five other farmers below Rs one lakh each.

This is not a solitary example of fall out of farm laws and open market policy of the center and state Government(s).  Numbers of prominent famers including BJP MLAs have been showing concern of such incidents in the past.

Two BJP MLAs (and apple growers) have also expressed deep concern over such non market forces posing as apple traders and commission agents. They lamented that they were also cheated to the tune of lakhs by such non market traders.

BJP MLA from Chopal  Balbir Thakur and Mandi Anil Sharma have stated so, on the floor of the house seeking protection for the gullible farmers under APMC act that they were cheated by the similar open market mafia.

Dozens of similar cases were resolved by the SIT constituted after directions of the High court in 2018 and 2019. A number of apple growers are complaining that they are not being paid. They state that apple commission agents and traders have gone missing after purchasing the fruit without making payment. These are some glaring examples of fall out of so called farm law reforms.

The BJP Government which wants to amend the APMC act in Himachal Pradesh Assembly and also repeal Himachal Pradesh Essential Commodity acts was vehemently opposed by the CPI (M) MLA Rakesh Singha in 2019. Apple contributes to the hill economy as Rs 4500 Cr to Rs 5000 Cr worth crop is being sold every year by the apple farmers.

Three so-called farm laws are not in favour of HP farmers: HKS


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