Bengaluru: The protests by farmers – mainly from Punjab and Haryana – enter the sixth day. The grouse of these farmers is the issue of minimum price support, apart from corporates taking over the system. 

While the protests continue, The New Indian Express has reported that, in Maharashtra, as per MahaFPC, the umbrella body of farmer producing companies (FPCs) FPCs in four districts have made about Rs 10 crores from trade outside mandis. 

The farm bills were passed by the Indian Parliament in September. 
In the last three months, 19 FPCs, mainly in Marathwada, have recorded 2,693.588 tonne out-of-mandi trade with companies. Out of these, 13 FPCs in Latur have alone supplied 2,165.863 tonne mainly to ADM Agro Industries Private Ltd. Similarly, four FPCs in Osmanabad supplied 412.327 tonne and one FPC each in Hingoli and Nanded have supplied 96.618 tonne and 18.78 tonne oilseed to companies, the website added. 

Here is a heartening story of how a farmer used these laws to sue traders and recover payments from them, as reported by Hindustan Times.

Jitendra Bhoi, a maize cultivator in Maharashtra became the first farmer to make such a move.

Using one of the provisions in the laws, he sued 2 traders for not clearing an outstanding bill of Rs 2,85,000 and got his dues settled suitably.

It is to be noted that the laws mandate that payments have to be made within three days of the transaction.

“Before The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020 was enacted this September, India did not have legal mechanism available for farmers to enforce time-bound payments,” the website quoted an official on conditions of anonymity. 
The 2 traders who purchased corn from the complainant made an initial payment of Rs 25,000 but failed to pay up the balance even after a long time. That is when the farmer under question decided to take up the legal route.

Fortunately, a clerk alerted him on the new laws which mandated payment within 3 days of transaction.

“A clerk I know in the local market alerted me to this provision in new laws brought by the government. He said traders must now pay within three days. I then decided to file a complaint,” the website added the farmer as saying.

The magistrate’s closure report on the complaint reads thus: “After studying the case, listening to the farmer, and going through documents, it has been ordered by me that the buyers must make immediate payments owed to the farmer”.