Land Acquisition Bill: All-party meet fails to reach consensus
New Delhi: With no consensus emerging on the Land Acquisition Bill in an all-party meeting Thursday, the government has decided to send the draft of the proposed legislation to the leaders concerned for perusal and discuss their suggestions in the next meeting.
Members from various parties presented their views at the all-party meeting held in Parliament House.
Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh told the meeting that the amendments to the Bill have come down to 28 and the government is confident of its smooth passage in the on-going session.
After members voiced their concerns about some provisions of the proposed legislation, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath and Ramesh said copies of the Bill will be sent to all parties by tonight. All parties can study the Bill and come up with their suggestions in the next meeting which will be held on March 20, they said.
During today's meeting, SP leader Mulayam Singh Yadav said while the population is increasing putting more pressure on land, multi-crop yielding agricultural land should not be used for housing and other purposes.
Sharad Yadav (JD-U) echoed these sentiments and said fertile agricultural land should not be acquired for housing and industrialisation.
The Left parties, which had earlier moved over a hundred amendments to the Bill, said the government had recently circulated over 180 amendments, most of which had not been recommended by the Standing Committee.
"This makes it a fit case for referring the legislation to the Standing Committee or the Select Committee, which can study these amendments and submit a report to the House in the ongoing Budget session itself after the break," CPM's Basudeb Acharia said after the meeting.
His colleague Sitaram Yechury said the Bill needed to be either redrafted or substantial number of amendments would have to be moved.
Trinamool Congress said it was opposed to sending the Bill again to a Parliamentary panel. "We support the recommendations of the Standing Committee...Let us not waste time in sending back and forth the Bill to a committee," said Sudip Bandhopadhyay.
The Bill makes it mandatory to take the consent of 80 per cent of the people whose land is taken for private projects. The revised Bill also makes mandatory obtaining of consent of 70 percent of the people whose land will be for acquired in the case of public-private partnership projects.