New Delhi: The Centre is "examining" certain provisions of the Land Acquisition Act after some state governments and other stakeholders flagged their concerns over the issues, Rural Development Minister Birender Singh said on Monday.
Some state governments and other stakeholders have raised "concerns" about some provisions in the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, enacted last year during the erstwhile UPA regime.
The states are concerned about provisions of the Act including mandatory Social Impact Assessment in all cases of land acquisition and consent requirement in case of acquisition for private companies and public-private partnership projects, the minister said.
In a written reply to the Rajya Sabha, Singh said the states are also concerned about provisions of the Act including special powers in case of urgency to acquire land, development of cultural wasteland in lieu of acquisition of multi-cropped irrigated land and rehabilitation and resettlement provisions in case of purchase through private negotiations, retrospective clause, etc.
"These are being examined," the minister said.
The Land Acquisition Act, enacted during the erstwhile UPA regime with the then opposition BJP supporting it, seeks to set a fair compensation for farm land being taken over for industrial projects.
Industries have complained that the law has made land acquisition very difficult, affecting speedy implementation of projects.
States too have come out openly against the law saying it had hurt the process of acquiring land for infrastructure projects. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had said that the "obstacles" to the land laws would have to be first removed in order to implement the concept of smart cities in India.
The Rural Development Ministry, which held consultations with the state governments, has already suggested a number of amendments to the Act that will water down provisions such as mandatory consent of at least 70 per cent locals for acquiring land for PPP projects, and 80 per cent for private projects.