New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Supreme Court on Tuesday suspended the implementation of farm laws and formed a four-member committee to end the deadlock between the Centre and farmers protesting against the controversial agri laws. The committee will comprise of Bhupinder Singh Mann of Bhartiya Kisan Union and Anil Ghanwat of Shetkeri Sangthana, it said.

The court said that it has the power to suspend the laws, but that will not be done permanently. "We cannot keep the farm laws abeyance for nothing. There must be some progress to resolve the issue over farm laws which we want to do through committee," the court said. 

Pronouncing its verdict on a batch of petitions challenging the constitutional validity of farm laws, a bench headed by Chief Justice of India SA Bobde said that the court has the power to suspend the legislation and form a committee. 

"This committee will be for us. All of you people who are expected to solve the issue will go before this committee. It will not pass an order or punish you, it will only submit a report to us," the CJI said. 

"We are forming a committee so that we have a clearer picture. We don't want to hear arguments that farmers will not go to the committee. We are looking to solve the problem. If you (farmers) want to agitate indefinitely, you can do so," he added. 

The remarks came after Advocate ML Sharma, appeaering for the protesting farmers, told the court that farmers have said they will not appear before any committee to be constituted by the court.

The Supreme Court said that the committee will examine the pros and cons of the farm laws and will be "part of the jusidical process". The bench said it will deal with the farm laws after the committee has submitted its reports on which provisions need to be deleted. 

Seeking cooperation from farmer unions, it said that those who genuinely wanted resolution to the issue will go to the committee. "This is not politics. There is a difference between politics and judiciary and you will have to cooperate," it said. 

The court also issued notice to the farmer unions on the application filed by Delhi Police seeking direction to stop the  proposed tractor rally by protesting farmers on Republic Day. 

"We will say in the order that farmers may apply for permission to the Delhi Police Commissioner for protests at Ramlila Maidan or other locations," the CJI said. 

The Centre on Monday moved the Supreme Court seeking an injunction against the proposed tractor rally or any other demonstration by the protesting farmers which intends to disrupt the celebrations of Republic Day on January 26.

Senior advocate Harish Salve, appearing for one of the petitioners, said staying implementation of the laws shouldn't be seen as a political victory. It should be seen as a serious examination of concerns expressed over the legislations, he added. 

On the petitions alleging land grab of the farrmers, the bench said will direct that farmers’ land should not be liable to be sold under new farm law because of loss in produce.

The judges rebuffed the lawyer for protesting farmers, ML Sharma, as he said farmers would not participate in the committee as Prime Minister Narendra Modi had refused to talk to them. "We cannot ask the PM anything, he is not a party before us," said the Chief Justice.

On Monday, the top court pulled up the Centre for its handling of the farmers protest against the new farm laws saying it is “extremely disappointed” with the way negotiations between them were going and it will constitute a committee headed by a former Chief Justice of India to resolve the impasse.

Indicating amply that it may go to the extent of staying the implementation of the contentious farm laws, the apex court refused to grant extra time to the Centre to explore the possibility of amicable solution saying it has already granted the government a “long rope”.

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta