Chhattisgarh not to acquire agricultural land for industries

December 27th, 2008 - 1:56 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata PartyRaipur, Dec 27 (IANS) Chhattisgarh’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government said Saturday it would now only provide government-owned or barren land for setting up new industrial units, instead of agricultural land.”Industries are very essential for social and economic development of the state as well as ensuring jobs to local people but we will provide either government-owned or barren land for the industrial units coming up,” Chief Minister Raman Singh told reporters.

He said that his government would soon start identifying such government-owned and barren land across the state.

“In the process of industrialisation, the government is committed to fully take care of farmers’ interests and will give all kind of support to agriculture-based industries in larger interests of the farmers,” Singh said.

The announcement assumes major significance against the backdrop of several industrial projects in the state being stuck for years as the government is finding it tough to complete acquisition of land for the purpose.

Even Tata Steel and Essar Steel that signed deals with state government in 2005 for five million tonnes per annum (MTPA) plant and 3.2 MTPA plant respectively have not been able to start their projects due to farmers’ protests in mineral-rich Bastar region, where these factories were due to come up.

Singh, who took oath Dec 12 for the second term in a row as chief minister, said his government would focus on infrastructure development, ensuring food security and containing migration of poor people who leave annually in large numbers for other states in search of jobs.

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