Wrong pact at Bali can hit Food Security Act, says Raman Singh

Singh, who wrote to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday, said a number of public welfare schemes being run in his state like public distribution system (PDS) will also be jeopardised if any negotiations are allowed in this case.

‘I would like to re-affirm that India should not take any position in Bali that would compromise the food security interests of hundreds of millions of Indian farmers and poor and marginalised communities that are dependent on the public distribution system.

‘We support the statement of Anand Sharma at the ministerial this morning (in Bali) stating that food security is non-negotiable.  India should not back down on this position and should not be open to any negotiation,’ he said in his letter to the PM.

Commerce and industry minister Anand Sharma, in a strongly-worded message to the WTO members at Bali, said the food security issue is ‘non-negotiable’ for New Delhi.

‘The ‘peace clause’ that has been proposed by the US and the EU is time-bound and not linked to a permanent solution’, Sharma said.

It also places onerous requirements for data that India has to give and leaves us open to being dragged into the dispute settlement mechanism both under the Agreement on Agriculture (AoA) and the Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures (ASCM).

‘Under these circumstances, any dilution of the G-33 proposal is completely unacceptable to the people of India,’ Singh said.
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