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Updated on: Monday, October 04, 2021, 02:19 PM IST

FPJ Legal: The 3 agri laws have been stayed, what are you protesting against, Supreme Court asks farmers' body

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The three new farm laws have already been stayed, the Supreme Court said on Monday and asked a farmers' body what it is protesting against when these legislations are not in place.

A bench of Justices A M Khanwilkar and C T Ravikumar said where is the question of going on protest once a party has already approached the court challenging the validity of the laws.

When Attorney General K K Venugopal referred to the Lakhimpur Kheri incident in which eight people were killed on Sunday, the bench said nobody takes responsibility when such incidents happen.

Citing the Lakhimpur Kheri violence, Attorney General K.K. Venugopal on Monday told the Supreme Court that an "unfortunate incident" happened and the protest against the farm laws must stop now. At this, the top court said that when "such incidents happen, nobody takes responsibility".

"A large number of petitions (against the three farm laws) have been filed. An unfortunate event happened at Lakhimpur Kheri. Such incidents should not happen. The protests must stop", Venugopal told a bench headed by Justice A.M. Khanwilkar.

"When such incidents happen, nobody takes responsibility," said the bench, noting that when it had already stayed the three farm laws, there is nothing to be implemented and what are the farmers protesting for.

Stressing that no one other than the top court can decide the validity of the farm laws, the bench said: "When that is so, and when farmers are in court challenging the laws, why protest on streets?"

"Protest why? When the law is not in force at all and the court has kept it in abeyance. Law is made by Parliament, not by the government."

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the bench that once the matter is before the highest Constitutional court, nobody can be on the streets on the same issue.

The top court was hearing a plea filed by a farmers' body protesting against the three new farm laws and seeking directions to authorities to allow it to stage 'satyagrah' at Jantar Mantar here.

'Kisan Mahapanchayat', the farmers and agriculturists body, and its president have also sought directions to the concerned authorities to provide space to at least 200 farmers or protestors of the body at the Jantar Mantar for organising peaceful and non-violent 'Satyagrah'.

The bench, which posted the matter for hearing on October 21, transferred to itself the plea, which was filed by the farmers' body before the Rajasthan High Court challenging the validity of the three farm laws.

Several farmer organisations are protesting against the passage of three laws -- The Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020 and Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020.

Initially, the protests started from Punjab in November last year and later spread mainly to Delhi, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh.

(With inputs from IANS and PTI)

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Published on: Monday, October 04, 2021, 02:19 PM IST
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