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Can Parliament make law, if agriculture is state subject? SC restores PIL raising this question - New Delhi News

New Delhi, Nov 19 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Thursday restored a PIL which challenged the constitutional validity of the newly enacted farm laws citing that it is important to establish if the Parliament has the power, if the state frames a law, as agriculture is a state subject in the Constitution.

Updated Nov 19, 2020 11:45 AM

Can Parliament make law, if agriculture is state subject? SC restores PIL raising this question - New Delhi News

The plea filed by advocate M.L. Sharma was dismissed earlier, but on Thursday, he contended before a bench headed by Chief Justice S.A. Bobde, "we only have to see if Parliament has the power, if the state frames a law." The bench also comprising Justices A.S. Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian told Sharma his plea was earlier dismissed as there was no cause of action. But Sharma insisted that he should be given an opportunity to present his case, as he has raised an important question of law.

Sharma seeking restoration of his dismissed PIL said if he could not appear before the court and argue himself, then it amounts to non-appearance.

The bench asked Sharma, why should his petition be restored, and the court cannot say the laws enacted is right or wrong. Sharma refused to withdraw the petition and insisted the bench to restore it. After a brief hearing in the matter, the bench said "We will restore and keep your matter for admission after two weeks." Sharma claimed that on the last hearing he could not argue his case.

On October 12, the top court had issued a notice to the Centre on a batch of petitions against the recently enacted farm laws and had sought its reply. However, the top court dismissed the PIL filed by Sharma, and asked him to approach the High Court instead.

Earlier, the apex court had decided to hear pleas of RJD MP Manoj Jha and DMK Rajya Sabha MP Tiruchi Siva, and one by Rakesh Vaishnav of Chhattisgarh Kisan Congress against the three laws -- Farmers'' (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020; Farmers'' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020 and The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act 2020. On September 27, President Ram Nath Kovind gave his assent to these laws.

The petitions have challenged the constitutional validity of these laws and sought the court to set it aside on various grounds.

"That the present petition is being filed to decide constitutional questions follow such as whether Parliament has constitutional power to make a law in the subject matter belong to state list," said Sharma's plea, which cited that the agriculture is placed at entry 14 of the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution.

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