New Delhi: Describing the three new farm laws as "unconstitutional and illegal", former Punjab minister Navjot Singh Sidhu on Thursday said it was an attack by the Centre upon the federal structure and the right of states to frame legislations.
He said the new laws will lead to auctioning of land in Punjab and leave its residents as "slave" and asked the Congress government in the state to take "bold and solid steps" to meet the "aspirations" of people protesting against the legislations.
"The new farm laws are unconstitutional and illegal. It's an attack by the Centre on the right of states to frame new laws and the federal structure," he told reporters here.
Referring to the ongoing farmer protest against the laws, he said the peasantry has never lost a battle.
The Punjab Assembly had passed Bills last year to negate the three farm laws. The bills are pending for approval of the governor.
Sidhu said, "Minimum support price must be given on pulses and oil seeds by the Punjab government. This will help in crop diversification."
He also stressed upon providing bargaining power to farmers by way of giving them holding capacity of perishable crops through storage facilities and infrastructure development.
He sought amendment in the cooperative act to giving powers to farmers to set up a cooperative body. "This will help farmers to manage crops and give them collective strength," he added.
Sidhu said that farmers will be able to fix rates of their produce through cooperation and this will give them bargaining powers.
He also demanded wage income on the pattern of MGNREGA to farmers.
Rejecting the three new agri laws, he cautioned that what the Centre is doing is "incorrect" not only for farmers but for the entire country as well.