The Haryana Assembly Tuesday passed a Bill to fast-track land acquisition, even as opposition Congress demanded it be either withdrawn or referred to the House’s select committee alleging that many of its provisions are “anti-farmer”.
As BJP-JJP government moved ahead with the Bill, Congress legislators led by Leader of Opposition Bhupinder Singh Hooda staged a walkout from the House.
Congress legislators also termed it a “black law” hinting it may further fuel the farmer agitation going on for the past nine months.
The BJP-JJP state government had proposed ‘The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Haryana Amendment) Bill, 2021′ to amend the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013.
The Bill states that “to ensure that the existing infrastructural projects are completed and do not suffer and to protect the public interest, the state government intends to amend Section 2 and insert Section 10-A in the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013, to exempt certain developmental projects, including rural infrastructure, affordable housing, industrial corridors and health and education and metro rail projects from the purview of the principal Act pertaining to conducting social impact assessment study”.
On a question regarding the land acquisition bill, CM Manohar Lal Khattar said it has been passed to ensure smooth commencement and completion of linear development, essential and emergency projects.
But former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda termed the move aimed at “crony capitalism”. He also objected on the powers given to the Collector for land acquisition proceedings in the Bill.
Congress MLA Kiran Choudhry also that the more powers to Collector may adversely affect the rights of female members of the families concerned and the tenants.
Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala, who had moved the Bill in the Assembly, strongly defended it and said that Haryana is not the first state to bring in amendments as 16 states had already amended the 2013 Act.