The BS Yediyurappa led Karnataka government’s ordinance seeking to amend the Agriculture Produce Market Committee Act has been returned by Governor Vajubhai Vala for the ‘full consideration of the cabinet’, according to the government officials aware of the developments.
The ordinance seeks to relax restrictions on the sale of agriculture produce.
The development comes amid opposition from the Congress and the JD(S) to diluting the act through an ordinance. Earlier today, former chief minister and the leader of opposition in the assembly, Siddaramiah, had a telephonic conversation with chief minister B S Yediyurappa, in which he demanded that the ordinance be dropped.
On Tuesday, JDS leader Kumaraswamy warned against bringing the ordinance claiming it would only benefit multinational companies and large industry players at the expense of farmers and the state exchequer.
KPCC President D K Shivakumar, too, had termed the proposed ordinance “anti-farmer.”
The Governor is believed to have returned the ordinance with the suggestion that it was better to place it before the entire cabinet for a discussion since it involved a major policy decision.
A senior government official who didn’t wish to be named told HT that the ordinance was sent to Raj Bhavan on Monday.
“The Governor has not rejected (the ordinance) but (has) just returned the ordinance for a technical reason. The cabinet is meeting tomorrow (Thursday) and it will be resent after that,” the official mentioned above said.
BJP ruled Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat have already amended the APMC act and the Yediyurappa government has claimed that the proposed changes would provide farmers with better bargaining power and was in their interest. The amendments have been suggested by the Centre as part of reforms in the farm sector.