New Delhi: Former prime minister and Vokkaliga strongman HD Deve Gowda on Tuesday expressed his reservation over the Land Acquisition Bill, opining that the ordinance would 'harm' the farmers.
Gowda, however, said that acquisition of land is important for carrying out development work.
"I am going to express my reservations on the Land Acquisition Bill as it is going to harm farmers. But if they try to protect the farmers by bringing certain amendments to this present bill, then that can be thought over. Without acquisition of the land, you can't carry out any developmental activities," Gowda said.
He further said that development at the cost of farmers is not desirable.
"The Prime Minister's mantra is development, so he wants to go at full speed for development. But at the same time, just going at such a speed without taking proper protection... for the farmer community, it is difficult," he said.
The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Amendment) Bill, 2015, which is set to replace the Land Acquisition Ordinance passed in 2013, has drawn sharp criticism from various quarters.
Union Rural Development Minister Chaudhary Birender Singh had earlier in the day introduced the bill in the Lok Sabha amid uproar by the opposition.
Meanwhile, several social activists and farmer unions, led by Anna Hazare, are protesting the issue at the Jantar Mantar in the national capital.