As we all witness the protests at Delhi’s Borders by a group representing Farmers from Punjab, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh, it brings forth a pertinent question for all to ponder-bwho gets to decide?
The democracy is defined as a governing system in which the government is chosen by the people, for the people, of the people. With a pre-defined frequency, an election is held, and votes are counted and political party getting majority number of members forms the government
Once sworn in, the Prime Minister and his cabinet colleagues ponder over the pending issues, reports, analysis and decide to make certain laws which should serve the people of the country. Once cabinet approves a proposal, same is passed in Parliament after discussion and views are shared from Opposition Members and their amendments are discussed, approved, or rejected. After parliament passes a particular bill, there is still a chance of judicial review and honorable court can still quash the bill as un-constitutional
The above with obvious deviations in a humane and democratic society is a generic template for any law to be made and practiced
Now we come to the agricultural field and note that hardly any reforms have been brought in this sector in last forty years or so since Green Revolution.
It is common knowledge and repeating here with grief that condition of farmers in our great country is beyond pathetic. The farmers earn little to nothing and whatever they earn also come in small installments with repeated request to commission agents or sugar mills or government departments as the case may be
It is not a surprise that farmers commit suicide as unable to pay back their debts, send their kids to school or able to find two meals a day
Something had to be done for the farmers, someone had to come forward and think out of the box. Thus, the present government under the leadership of Prime Minister Mr Modi brought forward three laws for agricultural reforms. The basic template of these laws appears in most prominent political parties’ manifesto and most political thinkers, farmer unions and experts agree that agricultural reforms are necessary in our country for the farmers to have a decent living
So, the Government discharges its constitutional duty and follows the due process of laws formation and laws are passed in the parliament. No law is perfect, and all laws have its own set of flaws, misuse or amendments are needed. Dowry law, SC/ST law, Domestic abuse laws, rape laws are just few examples how such laws can be mis-used and put someone entire life in jeopardy
Let us come back to farm laws as these are popularly referred in public now. A group of farmer unions who anyway are known for anti-government stance have decided to protest the new laws. They have a right to their opinion and can protest peacefully under the democratic set up in our country.
Protesters have also gone to the court for these laws to be reviewed by the honorable justice and to decide if these laws are good for the people and meet the merit criteria from the constitutional point of views.
However what I am unable to understand is protesters blocking highways and access to Delhi and bent on complete roll back of these laws as they don’t agree with these laws. There comes the root of this article—who gets to decide?
If there are number of farmers protesting these laws, there are also other farmers who appear to be satisfied with the new laws and want them to remain in-forced. Under such drastically opposite views, would it not be acceptable to let the court decide the issue and till then protesters can call off their protest and go home. This weather is not good for the elderly to be out and about on the road without proper warm clothing’s.
There comes the twist in the tale as all opposition political forces join the protest and mislead the un-informed farmers to continue the protest. The opposition leaders have nothing to lose as only the farmers, common people or the government ministers are having issues to resolve.
Such sad state of political opportunism which is obviously harming the other associated business by blocking the highways, causing health issues for protesting farmers and creating a poor reflection of India as a nation where mature decision regarding the reforms cannot be taken by the government with consensus among all concerned.
Do we expect too much from Political parties or unions?
Your guess is as good as mine