1. Opinion: Has Prime Minister Narendra Modi finally killed the Land Acquisition Bill?

Opinion: Has Prime Minister Narendra Modi finally killed the Land Acquisition Bill?

What will happen to the NDA’s Land Acquisition Bill after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision to avoid re-promulgation of the ordinance that is lapsing today?

By: | New Delhi | Updated: September 1, 2015 11:52 AM
Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his ‘Mann ki Baat’ programme, has announced that he will allow the Land Bill ordinance to lapse. (AP)

Santosh-TiwariWhat will happen to the NDA’s Land Acquisition Bill after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision to avoid re-promulgation of the ordinance that is lapsing today?

The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Second Amendment) Bill, 2015 was introduced in Lok Sabha on May 11, 2015, and it was subsequently referred to the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) on May 12, 2015, which was earlier expected to submit its report by the first week of Monsoon Session; but, thanks to the Parliamentary logjam over Lalitgate and Vyapam scam, it is now slated to present its report in the Winter session.

According to a member of the panel, just because the government has decided against re-promulgation of the Ordinance, doesn’t mean that the Land Amendment Bill has been killed. “It has to happen in Parliament. The Bill is Parliament’s property and the government will have to take it back there,” the member said.

But, rather than pulling out the Bill completely, the more likely possibility is that it will be modified as per the recommendations of the JPC.

As the NDA Ordinance is lapsing, land acquisition would be governed now by the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013 which came into force on January 1, 2014.

The JPC member, however, said that, “It is not only the question of private-public (PPP) projects, on which, there has been a consensus in the committee that no dilution should be done in the consent and the social impact assessment clauses; there are several necessary changes which need to be brought in the UPA’s 2013 Act besides removing the anomalies”.

There has to be a provision for guaranteeing employment and compensation to the farm labourers along with the landowners, he said, adding that about 32 anomalies have been identified by the members to be removed from the 2013 Act. All this can happen only when the government decides to get the modified Bill passed in Parliament.

The NDA government has nothing more to lose from here – it has already been subjected to its worst defeats in this episode. In any case, states like Rajasthan have already initiated the process for implementing liberal land acquisition norms as per the provisions of the NDA Bill, and this can be replicated by the other states.

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  1. R
    rajeev ranjan
    Sep 2, 2015 at 9:48 am
    No doubt, BJP Govt. tried its level best to legislate the draconian & anti-farmer Land acquisition bill. Govt. had no concern for the 130 million farmers and equal number of farm labourers. Govt. published fabricated/tutored statistics to cheat farmers. The bill was meant exclusively to grab land from farmers & gift to rogue Corporates. The opposition parties deserve appreciation as they could create awareness amongst the farmers of the hidden agenda of BJP. Had the bill been ped, it would have been a double blow for the farmers & labourers due to following reasons: (1) The subsidies to farmers were withdrawn, (2) Steep escalation in the prices of fertilizers, pesticides, & failure of monsoon, etc. (3) The farmers are denied remunerative price to their products due to cheating by middlemen/traders with Govt. support, (4) Drastic reduction in budget allocation for social, healthcare, educational sectors, and (5) Undue concessions/subsidies to Corporates.
    Reply
    1. K
      Krish
      Sep 1, 2015 at 5:23 am
      As I always feel no bill can ever be ped in RS if the Government depends upon the Congress and their goodwill because of their pathological hatred for Modi and consequently no rational discussion is possible and this is the traagic truth. Either the Government has to trace innovative ways to byp the obstacle or goad the States to find out alternatives for developing their States in their own way and wherever it is possible. Kris
      Reply
      1. Neeta Khurana
        Sep 1, 2015 at 11:53 pm
        Isn't it ironical that you are forcibly acquiring land for the corporates whose foundations are based on the principles of free economy. These corporates should be the first to oppose such draconian laws but we see the reverse happening. This is because in the country politics and corruption has seeped in at every level. The corporates instead of improving their business skills, strategic thinking & leadership skills so that they can truly add value to society to resort to looting the poor farmers and bribing the politicians. If forcible land acquisition is so critical to industrial growth then why after more then 100 years of this practice the country is still not reached a decent stage of industrialisation? In a country where the poor are starving to death,we still have the luxury to be the largest importer of defence goods ? Even a simple toy or electronic item needs to be brought from abroad. People who fought for our freedom and who saw slavery closely knew that for a country to remain independent and proud you need to respect the soldiers and farmers and that is why the slogan Jai Jawan , Jai kisan was coined. Today we see the valiant soldiers being humiliated and beaten by the goons of these politicians and the farmers are being forced to commit suicide. We are heading towards slavery 2. The farmers who consute the bulk of this country might be poor but have lived with dignity. You take away their land and their dignity and give to corporates who in turn give some of them very low paid jobs. If the business does well then the owners of these corporates and their partners (the politicians) rake in the money , if the business fails then you fire the people on whose land you built the industry and sell of the factory at huge profits. If you do the calculation the return that these farmers would have given would be less that 0.5 %. These calculations have been done by a lot of NGO's and it is a matter of fact that the poor have always been at a huge loss. The future generations of these farmers are forever left without any dignity or money and at the mercy of these politicians. Has anyone audited that out the millions of acres handed over the industry in the past so many years how much of that is actually being used as industries? you will be surprised if you see the data. What kind of industries are we giving these land to? Companies like Dow Chemicals, Monsanto etc who have harmful production practices and the foreign governments don't want them to produce on their soil. Are we so stupid that we don't even realise after witnessing the Bhopal gas tragedy where thousands of families and their generations are still paying the price for the greed of these politicians.
        Reply
        1. Plugin Caroo
          Oct 7, 2015 at 2:07 pm
          Land acquisition Act is a British law which Independent India is still following... THIS HAS TO BE ABOLISHED ASAP... Govt too has to aquire land just as Private Companies aquire land... There cannot be TWO ways to do SAME business in ONE country!!! Most of the time the land acquired is not used and after decades is ped on to industrialist like TATA, Reliance, Adani under some or other pretext
          Reply

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