Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar on Thursday assured the farmers, who are protesting against the Centre's three contentious farm laws, that the APMCs (Agricultural produce market committees) will not be done away with. In fact, he added that the APMCs will be strengthened with the aid of the funds allocated under Atmanirbhar Bharat.
"It was earlier said APMCs would be strengthened. Efforts will be made to provide more resources to the APMCs. Rs 1 lakh crores allocated under Atmanirbhar Bharat to Farmers Infrastructure Fund can be used by APMCs," said Tomar.
"APMCs will not be done away with. After the implementation of farm laws, APMCs will receive crores of rupees from the Centre's Infrastructure fund, which will strengthen them and will be useful for more farmers," he added.
The Union Agriculture Minister further appealed to the protesting farmers to end their agitations. He reiterated that the Centre will not repeal the three farm laws, however, it is ready to hold talks to discuss other options.
"I want to appeal protesting farmer unions to end their protest and to held discussions. Government is ready for discussions," Tomar said.
For the uninitiated, the Centre and the unions have held 11 rounds of talks, the last being on January 22, to break the deadlock and end the farmers' protest. They are protesting against three laws and these laws are -- The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, and The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act.