Even and acquisition row over Gobindpura power plant seems to be spiralling into a poll issue and farm unions vowing to intensify the struggle against forced acquisition,the Mansa administration has threatened to deposit the compensation cheques of unwilling farmers in court,if they fail to claim the money.
Any farmer,who has not received his compensation cheque,can come to us and collect it. Else,in the due course of time,we will deposit the cheques in the competent court of law, Mansa Deputy Commissioner Ravinder Singh said on Tuesday.
He added: Around 90 per cent of the farmers,who gave up their land for the power project,had already received compensation cheques at the rate of Rs 23.77 lakh per acre. Only about 50 families are refusing to take the cheques. To my knowledge,no farmer had opposed the power plant when objections were sought under Sections 4 and 6 of the Land Acquisition Act,after the whole process was set in motion in 2010. In fact,the farmers had demanded that the power plant be set up in their area to usher in prosperity in the region.
Asked why the farmers were opposing the acquisition now,Singh claimed the issue had been hijacked by certain farm unions. The activists,who are opposing the acquisition,come from places like Bathinda,Barnala and other places, he said.
Meanwhile,BKU (Ekta Ugrahan),BKU (Dakounda) and number of other farm unions,are likely to intensify their struggle against forcible land acquisition. In the last couple of days,scores of activists have been taken into custody and subsequently sent to jail.
At no cost will the farmers part with their land. This is their only source of livelihood. We will uproot all the paraphernilia that has been placed to demarcate their land as acquired. We will announce our programme in a day or two, said BKU (Ekta Ugrahan) general secretary Sukhdev Singh Kokrikalan.
Nearly 880 acres of land had been finalised for setting up the power plant.
But owners of about 170 acres are not willing to give up their land. Amid protests,the acquisition of total land required for the project is now complete.