The Delhi High Court Women Lawyers Forum has released a statement that they shall be observing a fast on Kisan Diwas on December 23, in support of the farmers protesting the Union’s controversial farm laws. Along with members of the forum, the statement has been signed by Senior advocates such as Indira Jaising, Anand Grover, Mohan Katarki, Mahalakshmi Pawani and Biswajit Bhatacharya as also other advocates.
According to LiveLaw, the statement reads, “It is our belief that while the issue of the Constitutionality of the Farm Laws being enacted by the Center when agriculture is a state subject is subjudice before the Supreme Court and the issue of the legality of the enactment by a voice vote in the Rajya Sabha is also being heard by the Supreme Court, implementation of irreversible and far reaching farm laws would render these petitions infructuous and could cause irreparable damage to the farm sector in India”.
The lawyers stated that the laws will reduce farmers to “corporate serfs on their own land”. The lawyers demanded that the laws that were passed hastily in the Parliament be repealed. They observed that the country’s economy was suffering due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the country depends on farmers for sustenance and hence “government’s decision to enforce this legislation on the citizens during such a fragile time and that too, in an unconstitutional manner was a “matter of grave concern”.
The statement further reads, “We also believe that dismantling the regulatory mechanism of Minimum Support Price and permitting big corporates to negotiate with small farmers, who lack the means to enforce or negotiate contracts especially due to the absence of effective legal aid and judicial infrastructure in rural India and the prohibitive distance of High Courts and Supreme Court, these laws would usher in a new era of feudalism, where farmers will be reduced to corporate serfs on their own lands. The decisions of corporates driven by pro?t would also affect the food security if India and cropping patterns would be determined not by local needs but by international market forces”, reported LiveLaw.