Maharashtra government working on law making licence mandatory for traders procuring farm produce, says Thorat

The state government plans to bring a law making licence mandatory for traders procuring farm produce in Maharashtra, Revenue Minister Balasaheb Thorat said on Thursday. The legislation is set to be introduced in the Monsoon Session of the state legislature beginning July 5.

A Cabinet sub-committee, led by Deputy Chief Minister and Finance Minister Ajit Pawar, is working on a draft law.

Speaking to mediapersons, Thorat said, “We have taken a unanimous decision not to enforce the three farm laws enacted by the Centre in their current form. Instead, we want to strengthen our own laws that will be in the interest of APMCs (Agricultural Produce Market Committee) and farmers.”

“One significant aspect will be making licence compulsory for traders who procure produce from farmers…,” he added.

Thorat said the committee’s thrust is two fold. First, this will create uniformity, as every trader in a APMC will be registered. Second, if farmers are cheated or there is any dispute, it will be easier for the state to intervene against a licensed trader. “The most objectionable aspect of Centre’s farm laws is that these give blanket nod to any person with a PAN card to directly buy produce from farmers,” he added.

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