House passes Farmers Commission Bill

Govt rejects examination by select committee

SHILLONG: The Meghalaya Legislative Assembly on the last day of the Autumn session on Friday passed the Meghalaya Farmers (Empowerment) Commission Bill, 2019 amid the demand of the Opposition to take the Bill to a select committee for further examination.
Moving an amendment to the Bill, Mawsynram MLA, HM Shangpliang said as per the Bill, the Commission is supposed to be a corporate body and it would have the power to acquire and dispose of land and property.
Lamenting that it is just a one member body, he said it should have 5 members, including representatives from the farming community even as he added that the term of the chairman of the Commission should not be for five years but 2 years.
He also referred to the clause which states that the chairman of the Commission can directly brief about its activities to the Chief Minister bypassing the Agriculture Minister.
Congress legislators Ampareen Lyngdoh, Mukul Sangma and George Lyngdoh too demanded that the Bill should be referred to a select committee.
Replying to the proposed amendment, Agriculture Minister Banteidor Lyngdoh said the Commission will act as a bridge between the farmers and the government while suggesting that remedial measures will be taken for the benefit of the farming community.
Later, Lyngdoh requested the chief minister Conrad Sangma to reply on the matter.
Conrad said the Commission is a long pending demand which would serve the interest of the farmers of the state.
He also said if the need arises, different issues pointed out by the Opposition MLAs can be incorporated into the act by way of amendments.

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