Kolkata: The Trinamool Congress, which has
made notable gains at the hustings by spearheading anti-land
acquisition movements in rural West Bengal, today said it
wanted altogether a new bill on land acquisition to be passed
and not a mere amendment to the old Act.
"The new bill should address the needs of farmers and
ensure protection of agricultural land, our leader Mamata
Banerjee has suggested this to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh
and Congress chief Sonia Gandhi recently in Delhi," a senior
Trinamool leader said here.
Banerjee has asked the Trinamool Congress Law Cell to
draft a bill in this regard, he said. "Banerjee, also the
Railway Minister, wants a completely new bill to be introduced
instead of the proposed amendment Bill to the `archaic` Land
Trinamool Congress leader Sudip Bandyopadhay had recently
said the party was against acquisition of multicrop land for
industry and that the government should not have any role in
its transfer from seller to buyer.
"Mamata Banerjee has been uncompromising in protecting
the interests of farmers," Bandyopadhay said in an apparent
reference to the Land Acquistion (Amendment) Bill and the
Rehabilitation and Resettlement Bill.
"The buyer and seller should reach a settlement amicably.
No multi-crop land should be acquired. Monocrop or barren land
can be acquired," he had said.