The Rajasthan Assembly on Monday passed three bills to counter the farm laws enacted by the Centre with the state following the example of Congress-run Punjab and Chhattisgarh.
BJP MLAs staged a walkout just ahead of the voice vote that took place after about eight hours of debate in the House.
The Rajasthan bills mandate that crops will be bought or sold for no less than the minimum support price (MSP) and provide for imprisonment of three to seven years for harassing farmers.
However, the bills become law only after the Governor’s assent, who may withhold and decide to refer them to the President.
Parliament recently enacted farm laws deregulating the sale of agriculture produce. Several farmer unions and the opposition Congress claimed that the move by the BJP government at the Centre will lead to the dismantling of the MSP system.
Replying to the debate in the assembly, Rajasthan Parliamentary Affairs Minister Shanti Dhariwal said the entire country is against the Centre’s new farm laws.
“I can say it with a guarantee that all three farm laws will have to be withdrawn, just like the Land Acquisition Act,” Mr Dhariwal said.
Mr Dhariwal said farmers were free to sell their produce anywhere in the country in the existing system, contrary to what has been claimed by the Centre.
“Farmers were free to sell their produce anywhere in the country and you are saying that you have freed them. You have worked to handover agriculture mandis directly into the hands of corporate houses,” Mr Dhariwal said.