August 3, 2011 1:08:46 am
The Noida Kisan Sangharsh Samiti on Tuesday officially called off its agitation after receiving a written assurance of the agreements made on July 30,signed by Noida Authority CEO Balwinder Kumar.
At a meeting between the Noida Authority and 16 village heads on Saturday,farmers from 54 villages in Noida were promised 5 per cent land in the form of developed plots in three months. Additionally,they were assured that the abadi (residential) land,where villagers currently reside,would be regularised.
Despite calling off the agitation,Samiti members said they would monitor the activities of the Authority,and take to the streets if the promises were not fulfilled within a month.
The samiti is an umbrella organisation of farmers and village pradhans in Noida.
We have been assured that all the villages will be given 5 per cent developed plots in three months. At least 15 villages should get them by August 30, said Mahinder Awana,organisation spokesperson. If not,we will speak to the authorities and take to the streets again.
The farmers have,for the moment,decided to drop the demand for higher monetary compensation for the acquired land. Balwinder Kumar said,Raising the compensation is not up to us. But that can be discussed after three months.
As for land acquired between 1976 and 1997,all the farmers concerned will get a portion of the residential plots that have come up,the letter said. For farmers who have not received the benefits of this reservation yet,the Authority will ensure that the matter is resolved in a time-bound manner.
Additionally,as part of the deal,farmers children will get reservation benefits at private schools that come up in the area. This,however,will be contingent on the lease deal signed between the private institute and the Authority. The Authority will also consider provision of free medical services in hospitals.
Also,meetings will be held every month between the Noida Authority and the Gram Vikas Samiti,under the supervision of the CEO,to discuss issues pertaining to development and acquisition. Most farmers seemed extremely happy with the development,and saw it as the vindication of a long stuggle. Dalvir Singh Yadav,president of the Kisan Sangharsh Samiti,said,We have been demanding these measures for nearly 35 years. After the Supreme Court stepped in,we now have real hope. But it remains to be seen if the authorities will act.
Last month,the farmers had threatened to disrupt work at various government projects if their demands were not met by August 1.
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