First meeting of joint Parliament panel on land bill on Friday

The first meeting of the Joint Committee of Parliament, which will go into provisions of the controversial land acquisition bill, will be held on Friday.

New Delhi: The first meeting of the Joint Committee of Parliament, which will go into provisions of the controversial land acquisition bill, will be held on Friday.

Former Union minister and BJP MP SS Ahluwalia will head the Committee.

The 30-member panel would submit its report on the bill, which has already been passed by the Lower House, on the first day of Monsoon Session.

Almost the entire Opposition and some allies of the ruling NDA like Shiv Sena and Swabhimani Pakshya are opposing various provisions of the amendment land bill brought by the government.

Congress and Left parties have been specially targeting the Modi dispensation over the bill which they termed as "anti-farmer" and "pro-corporate".

The government, which had promulgated the land ordinance twice since December last, agreed to refer the bill to the joint committee following stiff resistance from the opposition and some of its allies during the recently-concluded Parliament session.

Twenty Lok Sabha members who are on the committee include KV Thomas, Rajiv Satav (both Congress), Anand Rao Adsul (Shiv Sena), Kalyan Banerjee (Trinamool Congress), B Mahtab (BJD), Mohammad Salim (CPI-M), Chirag Paswan (LJP) and Udit Raj, Anurag Thakur and Ganesh Singh (all BJP).

The 10 Rajya Sabha members include Ram Narain Dudi (BJP), Jairam Ramesh, Panna Lal Punia, Digvijay Singh (all Congress), Ram Gopal Yadav (SP), Sharad Yadav (JD-U), Sharad Pawar (NCP), Derek O'Brien (TMC) and Rajpal Singh Saini (BSP).

Only yesterday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said any amendments in the land acquisition bill in the interest of farmers, poor, village and nation would be accepted.

"Gaon, Garib, Kisan (village, poor and farmers): if the suggestions are favourable to these downtrodden groups and are in the interests of the nation, we will accept those suggestions," he had said. He also said that the passage of the Land acquisition bill and GST bill in Parliament was only "a matter of time".

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