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Home > News > Report On Land Acquisition Rehabilitation And Resettlement Bill 2011 Tabled India Inc Resents

Report on Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Bill, 2011 tabled; India Inc resents

Infrawindow News Bureau

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Mumbai

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May. 18, 2012, 09:00 AM

Report on Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Bill, 2011 tabled; India Inc resents

The report of Parliamentary Standing Committee on Rural Development on the Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Bill, 2011 (LARR Bill) was tabled on 17 May which recommended complete overhaul of the legislation. The committee is headed by BJP leader Sumitra Mahajan.

 

The report blamed the amendments in the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, carried out during Congress regimes of 1962 and 1984 for allowing acquisition of land by the state for companies. This unleashed tribal and rural backlash in the form of Naxal unrest. The panel observed that the current Bill has failed to rectify those errors. In fact, it observed that the Bill that was introduced in Parliament open the doors wider for any kind of land acquisition by the state for companies against the preamble to the LARR Bill, 2011.

 

India Inc has vehemently resented the recommendations of the committee citing it would be detrimental for the development of infrastructure. The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) President Adi Godrej said, "The Standing Committee report on land will adversely affect the manufacturing sector as it doesn't factor in industry needs. The industry has been left to fend for itself. Land acquisition process will become more complex and a ban on acquisition of land for Public-Private Partnership projects is detrimental."

However, Godrej contended that “the LARR Bill, 2011, had rightly included industry in the definition of Public Purpose as industry equally contributes in creating wealth and employment for the country.”

 

The report cited that “private purchase of land, not state acquisition, is the norm” in developed democracies like the US, Japan, Canada, among others. The panel recommended that the definition of public purpose should be “limited to linear infrastructure and irrigation, including multipurpose dams, and social sector infrastructure”being constructed at “state’s expense” and excluded state’s discretion on land acquisition for PPP projects or for private companies in the name of public services by them.

 

The committee is against acquisition of any land under agriculture cultivation. The relevant provisions of the current Bill bar land acquisition of “irrigated multi-cropped land”except in rare cases with conditions of compensatory agricultural land development for agriculture.

 

The report recommended against granting exemptions to 16 Central Acts, including the SEZ Act, Land Acquisition (Mines) Act, Atomic Energy Act, Coal Bearing Areas Acquisition and Development Act, and Electricity Act, by putting them in Schedule 4. The report also suggested removal of Clause 99 that sought to vest the Centre powers to “amend or alter” any of the four schedules related to determination of compensation for land, rehabilitation and resettlement, elements of infrastructure for rehabilitation, and exemption of 16 Central Acts.




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