Cong MPs dissociate themselves from Parl panel report advocating implementation of 1 of 3 farm laws
New Delhi: Three Congress MPs Saturday dissociated themselves from the report of a parliamentary standing committee recommending implementation of the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020, and alleged the report was adopted against norms and conventions.
The said Act is one of the three contentious agriculture-marketing laws which have triggered protests by farmers and which the Congress wants repealed.
The Congress and Trinamool Congress have accused the BJP of "flouting norms" and pushing the report in the absence of its regular Chairman, TMC MP Sudip Bandyopadhyay who is currently busy in West Bengal assembly elections..
Three Congress MPs in the panel - Saptagiri Sankar Ulaka, Rajmohan Unnithan and Vaithilingam Ve –have separately written to Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, urging him to look into the matter and allow them to record their dissent in writing.
The 11th report of the Standing Committee on Food, Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution was adopted on March 18 at its meeting chaired by acting chairperson Ajay Misra Teni (BJP), and it was tabled in Parliament on Friday.
Congress member Saptagiri Ulaka wrote to Om Birla disassociating himself from the report.
"Written to Hon'ble Lok Sabha Speaker to dissociate myself from the Eleventh Report of the Standing Committee on Food, Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution on the subject matter - 'Price Rise of Essential Commodities - Causes and Effects' tabled in Parliament on 19.03.2021," he said in a tweet sharing his letter to the Speaker.
In his letter to the Speaker, he has said, "I urge you to kindly look into the matter and give me the opportunity to record my dissent officially in the Report."
"It is highly irregular that such an important Report was circulated at a very short notice, and without recording any dissenting opinion, was tabled in Parliament," he said.
Ulaka alleged that he was not present when the report was adopted at the meeting called in a short notice of merely 15 hours.
"It is not only misleading the nation, but also against the norms and conventions of the functioning and the democratic spirit of the Parliamentary Standing Committee," he said in his letter to the Speaker.
He said the reports recommends on page 62 "to implement the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020 in letter and spirit".
"I completely dissociate myself with this recommendation and record my dissent to the Report...," Ulaka said.
Unnithan and Vaithilingam have also written similar letters to the Speaker.
They said the subject was selected by the Committee in 2019-20 for examination before the three farm ordinances and related farm laws were passed and the panel spent a cumulative time of 4 hours 45 minutes on it. They alleged that the Committee did not seek oral evidence from a single farmers' group or any independent expert before finalising the Report.
Trinamool Congress leader Derek O'Brien alleged that this is the con job done by the BJP's 'dirty tricks department'.
Meanwhile, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha on Saturday sought the withdrawal of a parliamentary panel's recommendation asking the Centre to implement the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020, one of the three agri laws against which the farmers have been protesting at Delhi borders for over 100 days.
The SKM, an umbrella body of over 40 farmers' union leading the farmers' agitation, alleged that the ECAA allows "unlimited private hoarding and black marketing". Their remarks comes after a parliamentary panel asked the government to implement in "letter and spirit" the ECAA.