Parliament passes Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, 2020

Parliament has passed the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, 2020 with Rajya Sabha approving it today.

The Bill allows the central government to regulate the supply of certain food items only under extraordinary circumstances such as war and famine. It will replace the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Ordinance, 2020 which was promulgated in June this year.

Replying to a discussion on the Bill, Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Danve Raosaheb Dadarao said that this is important legislation which will promote local for vocal initiative. He said, this legislation has been brought for the farmers due to the Covid-19 pandemic situation and subsequent lockdown, which created problems in the demand and supply chain. 

It will provide freedom to farmers to sell their produce as per their choice and create balance in demand and supply chain. He said, this Bill will provide assistance in the food production and create a storage system.
Participating in the discussion, Amar Patnaik of BJD said that several good provisions have been ed  in the legislation which will make the entire regime more stable. RCP Singh of JD (U) said it will ensure the better production of food grain and create robust storage facilities in the country. 

K. Ravindra Kumar of TDP advised the government to adopt cautious approach on the sensitive issue. G.K. Vasan of TMC (M) said that restriction on the movement of essential items lead to black marketing of the products. Gopal Narayan Singh of BJP said that government has taken several steps for the welfare of the farmers.

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