August 12, 2015 2:08:09 am
The Centre deferring the controversial land acquisition bill to the Winter session is not likely to pose any hurdles in development projects in Maharashtra, where mega-projects worth Rs 50,000 crore are in various phases in Mumbai and elsewhere across the state.
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said, “The centre’s decision to defer the land bill will not have any adverse impact on projects in Maharashtra.”
There are critical aspects in the Centre’s bill that had failed to get a consensus among political parties in the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha.
The reforms undertaken by the Fadnavis government found a way around some of the hurdles, particularly poor compensation, in land acquisition for development projects.
After taking charge of the state, he had reckoned that a major apprehension among those who protested against land acquisition related to coercive strategy to get prime land. To tackle the problem, the state government facilitated the highest compensation that finds no parallel in the country, almost five times more than the land price.
Fadnavis had issued a notification allowing direct purchase of land by private players from land owners. “The state government has provided adequate safeguards facilitating land owners to get five times higher price for the land. And also the decision to allow private players to directly negotiate with the land owners (farmers or any other individuals) ensures there is no interference from the government,” Fadnavis said.
A senior officer in the ministry of revenue and urban development said, “Two most debatable aspects that held back the centre’s land bill relates to 70 per cent consensus for land acquisition and environment impact assessment clauses.”
The state government has overcome apprehensions by paving the way for direct purchase. Facilitating, through law, a price of five times the land value also displayed fair intentions. The mega projects include coastal road, Mumbai Trans Harbour Link (MTHL), railway expansion projects complete with elevated corridors, Metros, western water ways, and Mumbai-Nagpur Superfast Highways.
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