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NCP says ready to back Land Bill in RS if concerns looked into

The NCP on Monday said it was ready to support the Land Acquisition Bill in the Rajya Sabha if the government looked into its concern regarding three issues, including the inclusion of consent clause and social impact assessment which has been done away with.



New Delhi: The NCP on Monday said it was ready to support the Land Acquisition Bill in the Rajya Sabha if the government looked into its concern regarding three issues, including the inclusion of consent clause and social impact assessment which has been done away with.

"We want the clause pertaining to the consent of farmers, if their land is being acquired, to be the part of the bill. Secondly, the social impact assessment clause has been done away with, but the government should ensure that it remains.

"Thirdly, under the new bill, land can be acquired for defence, irrigation, roads and highways, but the public purpose for which land will be acquired should not be extended any further," NCP general secretary D P Tripathi said.

The party also lashed out at the government for making lesser budgetary allocation for the agriculture sector than the last year.

Tripathi was speaking to reporters after the party's Working Committee meeting held at the party office here. The meeting was attended by NCP supremo Sharad Pawar, his daughter and MP Supriya Sule and Tripathi among others.

NCP sources said there was discussion on internal party elections, hinting at the re-anointing of Pawar as the party president.

Tripathi also sought to come out in support of the Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Democratic Party over the ongoing controversy of the release of separatist leader Masrat Alam.

"It is the court not the PDP that has released Masrat Alam...," Tripathi said.

He said the party's National Convention will be held in Patna in May this year.

The NCP Working Committee also saw concerns being raised over the growing incidents of communal violence in the country and rape of a 71-year-old nun in West Bengal.

"The party also expressed displeasure over comments made by Justice (Retd.) Markandey Katju on Mahatma Gandhi," Tripathi said, adding that condolences were also offered to RR Patil, late deputy chief minister of Maharashtra, who passed away last month.

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