Land bill may come up in parliament’s winter session

August 1st, 2011 - 6:15 pm ICT by IANS  

Mamata Banerjee Thiruvananthapuram, Aug 1 (IANS) The Land Acquisition and Rehabilitation and Resettlement Bill, 2011, is expected to come up in parliament during the winter session, a Planning Commission member said here Monday.

Mihir Shah, member of the commission, said that the draft of the bill had already been put up for public debate and in a month’s time they expected to get the feedback.

“It will come up in parliament in the winter session,” he said.

“We have now written to all the chief ministers and last (Sunday) night I got a happy news that West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has, in principle, agreed to our draft bill while she has expressed her reservations which we are capable of addressing,” said Shah at a media interaction.

He said that the proposed law would lay emphasis on rehabilitation and resettlement of the seller when land is taken over for development purposes.

“The proposed law lays down that when an area of 100 acres or more is acquired, the land owners and those who eked out a living with the use of the land should be adequately compensated,” he said.

“We have fixed that the land owner should be given six times the registered land value in rural areas, while in urban areas it should be double. Moreover, those who lose their land will get a monthly compensation of Rs.2,000 which would be indexed to inflation for 20 years,” said Shah.

During the interaction, Shah was joined by his classmate and former Kerala finance minister T.M. Thomas Isaac.

Both of them were class mates at the Centre for Development Studies here in the mid-1980s for a period of eight years.

“It is true that Kerala, at times, has been penalised for maintaining a better development. But that is going to be a thing of the past,” he said, responding to Isaac’s concerns.

Shah said that the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme would be completely overhauled in the next few weeks so as to make certain corrections.

“We have decided to raise the wages every year and these would have a link to inflation,” said Shah.

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