BJP highlights good elements of Land Acquisition Bill

After Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked party MPs to counter the "myths" propagated by the opposition parties against land bill, BJP on Wednesday launched a major initiative to project the good elements of the new bill introduced by it in Lok Sabha.

New Delhi: After Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked party MPs to counter the "myths" propagated by the opposition parties against land bill, BJP on Wednesday launched a major initiative to project the good elements of the new bill introduced by it in Lok Sabha.

The party claimed that Congress-ruled states and its chief ministers had also raised objection to the UPA's bill.

BJP has also launched a major online drive to highlight the good points in the bill that it touted as "farmer-friendly".

Government said many states had objected to the previous Land Bill passed in 2013 during UPA regime and highlighted former Maharashtra chief minister Prithviraj Chavan's objections in his letter dated August 3, 2011 to then Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh.

"On closer examination, we find that the provisions of the new Act will increase land and rehabilitation cost up to 6 times for public amenities like water supply, health facilities, sewerage and infrastructure (roads and power projects)," Chavan had said in his letter.

He had requested Ramesh to consider the suggestions put forth which include removal of 80 percent consent when government acquires land for industrial and urbanisation purposes.

He had also sought decentralising authority for deciding public purpose for government's own acquisition and for providing land owner a choice between three times market value plus proposed rehabilitation or six times market value without rehabilitation package, and barring litigation on the value of land.

Government also stated that Kerala and Haryana had sought modification of consent clause for rural and social infrastructure, while Karnataka and Kerala sought exemption from social impact assessment for rural and social for small projects.

Besides, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha and West Bengal had sought modification in the Act on the retrospective clause.

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