The Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA), which is funding and assisting the bullet train project, is learnt to have agreed to meet Surat farmers, who have been protesting against the land acquisition for the project between Ahmedabad and Mumbai.
A statement issued by advocate Anand Yagnik said that JICA representative Katsuo Matsumoto and other officials have “agreed to meet the affected farmers and their representatives at Surat”, following a representation by the farmers on September 18.
Yagnik is also the president of the farmers’ outfit, Gujarat Khedut Samaj.
“To save the time and travel cost of farmers, JICA have decided to meet them in Surat rather than calling them to Delhi. JICA’s team will be travelling to Surat on December 7 and 8,” the statement read.
According to the release, the officials will be meeting the affected landowners, farmers and others to see the situation at ground level. On December 8, JICA’s team will hold a meeting with the affected parties also.
Yagnik said that in their representation, the farmers had expressed “serious grievances with regard to land acquisition that is being done in complete and abject violation of JICA Guidelines and Central Land Acquisition Legislation…”