Farmers in Madhya Pradesh duped by merchants, lens on key clauses in farm legal guidelines

Citing the newly enacted farm legal guidelines, Khoja Merchants, a dealer agency in Dewas owned by brothers Pavan Khoja and Suresh Khoja, duped 22 farmers in Harda district of their 2,581 quintals of lentil and gram produce value practically Rs 2 crore.

The 22 farmers first tried to find the dealer by knocking at Dewas mandi for the reason that Khoja brothers had proven them the buying and selling licence registered by the mandi. However they realised that the duo had cancelled the registration inside three months of it being issued by the mandi final yr.

They went to the residence of the Khojas in Khategaon tehsil however couldn’t discover them. Lastly, the farmers filed an FIR with the Khategaon police and in addition submitted a written criticism to the Sub-Divisional Justice of the Peace of Khategaon.

The incident assumes significance because it touches upon two crucial features of The Farmers’ Produce Commerce and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020 — registration of merchants in non-public markets and dispute decision.

Beneath Part 6 of the Act, the SDM is authorised to resolve any dispute arising between a farmer and a dealer. This has run afoul with farmers who concern that with out recourse to courts they’d be left with no selection however to simply accept the settlement awarded by a Conciliation Board constituted by the SDM.

Protesting farmers have additionally demanded that merchants can’t be allowed to buy produce merely on the premise of their PAN playing cards in non-public markets. They’ve demanded dealer registration in non-public markets as properly.

In a written and signed criticism submitted to the SDM on December 26, the 22 farmers mentioned, “Pavan and Suresh Khoja got here to us on totally different days and bought our produce exhibiting their registered license assuring us that cash will likely be credited into our account. However when that didn’t occurred, we approached the Khategaon Mandi and realised they’re now not registered. We might request you to assist get us the cash of our produce.”

The farmers have addressed the applying to the Chief Minister and the Agriculture Minister too.

When contacted, Dewas District Collector Chandramauli Shukla instructed The Indian Express, “The matter was dropped at my discover as we speak afternoon. Now we have fashioned particular groups with assist from the police to trace the dealer and get the farmers their dues. We hope to trace him (Khoja) quickly.”

Kanhaiya Patel, one of many farmers from Harda district who was additionally cheated instructed The Indian Categorical that no less than 100-150 extra farmers unfold throughout 4 districts of Hoshangabad, Sehore, Harda and Dewas, have been duped.

It is just after the cheque issued to the farmers by the dealer bounced that they realised the fraud. Anand Jat, a farmer from Alanpur village in Harda district, mentioned Pavan Khoja approached him with a proposal to buy the produce and instructed him that after the enactment of the farm legal guidelines, the federal government had mandated merchants to immediately cope with the farmers.

Khoja supplied Rs 700 greater than the working mandi price, and gave him a cheque. He offered about 90 quintal of lentils value practically Rs 5.5 lakh, however the cheque bounced.

The most recent case in Harda — the constituency of Cupboard minister of Agriculture Kamal Patel — is the eight such reported in Madhya Pradesh for the reason that farm legal guidelines got here into power. The sooner circumstances embrace: 71 farmers cheated in Seoni, 61 in Hoshangabad, 24 in Gwalior, 13 in Guna, eight in Balaghat, and one every in Barwani and Jabalpur. Of those three have been resolved.

Very like Anand Jat, one other farmer Rahul Patel was additionally satisfied by Suresh Khoja. Patel offered 276 quintals of lentils and gram value Rs 20 lakh. The cheque issued to him additionally bounced. “It wasn’t a lot the additional revenue of Rs 100 however the price of transport to take the produce to the mandi which prompted me to promote the produce to Khoja. However now I’m caught,” he mentioned.

Kanhaiya Patel, who has been cheated of Rs 22.5 lakh, mentioned he was assured an RTGS cost in two days however that didn’t occur. He mentioned many farmers from Khategaon tehsil too have comparable complaints towards Khoja merchants. “We consider that there are no less than 100-150 odd farmers, and the entire quantity concerned is about Rs 5 crore,” he mentioned.

Dewas District Collector Shukla mentioned for the reason that farmers had been unfold over many districts, he would coordinate with others within the probe.

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