Wednesday, December 8, 2021
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Political compulsion overrides the journey of agriculture to agreed culture!!

By SK Nag

The recent repeal of 3 farm bills, enacted hastily without justifying the content and intent in details for mass consumption, has drawn flak. The way it was brought in a hurry got doubt and inconvenience before acceptance. Though it may be argued by the other side who stayed away from the agitation may be classified in segments who don’t want it but refused active participation and stayed low, some are insulated from this due to scale of involvement is too low, and some farmers wanted this law to come. The perception of these three categories of farmers is different. Obviously, the first segment who stayed quiet in this agitations is happy with the withdrawal, along with them who spent their days and nights in the border of Delhi. Finally, they got what they wanted. Even today, after withdrawal, the second segment is unaffected as they are entirely ignorant and indifferent as it never mattered anyway. The third segment who wanted this law is deeply hurt, bringing them back to square one.

All of us understand all the above three philosophies in prima facie, but what is not understandable is how the laws of reform will be undertaken in the future. Political structure in the coming days is not going to be a single-party majority. Regional parties will enjoy a stronghold in their respective states, so political overriding will be inevitable in the coming days. The farm bill repeal process has inaugurated the process of referendum. It is subject to debate if this will establish dangerous precedence of mass movement of a minority sector ‘who don’t want vs. major sector ‘who want.’

Without getting into the nitty-gritty of these three laws, the reasons for falling out, if discussed, would provide a better picture of failure. Was it policy failure, drafting failure, or a simple failure of cohesive politics? If the parliamentary system is considered, India inherits a well-thought-out political fabric where all parties with their elected representatives are supposed to discuss, moot, and conclude. But if this process is diluted by any means, fate would be like farm law in the future. So in democratic politics in a country of 1.3 billion people, the parties in power must recognize the power of opposition and netizen on social media outside parliament.

Twitter, WhatsApp, Facebook augmented and amplified the voice of agitators across the globe and could harbor the needed momentum to oppose the bill superseding the voice of those who wanted it with some modification.

This repeal precedence will undoubtedly delay any other bill intending to reform the country relevant, contemporary, and economically stable. The minor representation within parliament can also mobilize mass movement outside parliament. The process of parliament was often disrupted by a few political parties who could not rise above political mileage benefiting them.

The agriculture bill is good or bad is not a moot question. The process and manner in which the bill has been navigated were grossly wrong. BJP must understand the politics of India comprising of the silent majority vs. vocal minority outside the parliament in a more significant people-parliament. Election polling happens after five years, but people’s mandate is the culmination of the network effect accumulated in daily social media posts. The sentiment of political opinion is carried over by all of us and makes us judgmental at every point wherever it is observed iffy. So governance is not so easy like old days. Passage of reforms needs a political debate across the section of the society. The reform especially has a problem of change management. Politics of change is a battle we are fighting every day in our life.

Like the banking system, the communication system, and many other things are changing our life. Therefore change is constant is a motto of life now we are acknowledging. But when it comes to the political process, the resistance is evident.

Organic change or evolution of change is acceptable by society due to gradual change in demand and expectation, but sudden change is not welcomed. So political process must acknowledge the process of organic change through situation demand, not for political desire.

(Author is Industrial Engineer, Fellow Valuer, Chartered Engineer, BEE approved Energy Expert and Industry Mentor. The views expressed are personal opinion of the author. He can be reached at saibal.iim@gmail.com)

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