Farmers paid out for land at midnight camp in Mayawati’s village

July 31st, 2008 - 7:32 pm ICT by IANS  

Greater Noida, July 31 (IANS) In a midnight camp, authorities in Uttar Pradesh paid out compensations amounting to nearly Rs.330 million to farmers whose lands have been acquired for a proposed world class recreation centre in Chief Minister Mayawati’s village of Badalpur. The opposition Congress has termed the land acquisitions as “forced” and has already launched an agitation. The Uttar Pradesh authorituies last Tuesday foiled a Congress party plan to hold a public rally at Badalpur, arresting Congress leaders on Delhi-Uttar Pradesh broder.

Later Tuesday night and till Wednesday afternoon, the Greater Noida district officers paid out Rs.330 million to 85 farmers as compensation, farmers’ struggle committee chairman Jagvir Singh said.

The special camp to dole out compensation started at 9.30 p.m. Tuesday and went on all night, ending only Wednesday afternoon, he said.

On Tuesday, as they attempted to hold a public meeting at Badalpur, Congress leaders Digvijay Singh, Rita Bahuguna Joshi and Sachin Pilot were arrested at the Uttar Pradesh gate in Ghaziabad.

As the high drama was on at the inter-state border, Mayawati was busy condemning the Congress at a press conference in state capital Lucknow and officers worked to woo the farmers to accept the compensation and even set up a camp office in Badalpur, added the farmer leader.

Uttar Pradesh Congress president Rita Bahuguna Joshi has said the Greater Noida authority was acquiring land in Badalpur village at a rate six times lesser than the market price.

The Congress party has accused the chief minister of constructing a palatial house over 47 ‘bighas’ (18.8 acres) of land in her village and the district authorities have issued notices for land acquisition for 230.554 hectares in Badalpur, and 142.160 hectares in adjacent Saadupur.

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