Two days after the Supreme Court quashed the decision of the Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee government to acquire 1,000 acres in Singur in 2006 for allotting it to Tata Motors to set up its Nano car factory, the CPM has blamed the land acquisition Act which was in operation then. The CPI, on the other hand, bluntly said “the method adopted was not correct and put the Left in entire country in embarrassment.”
The CPM Politburo said the Left Front government had intended to develop industry and create jobs in the state through the Tata project. “However, the acquisition process had to be undertaken under the 1894 Land Acquisition Act, which was the only legal instrument available at that time. This was an Act which did not protect the interests of the farmers adequately. On land acquisition, the CPM had earlier acknowledged in its Central Committee review report of the 2011 assembly elections that ‘the administrative and political mistakes in this regard proved costly’,” it said.
The statement further said: “After the project was abandoned, the TMC government brought a Bill in the assembly to return land to those who had refused to take the compensation. The CPM had said now the land should be returned to all the erstwhile owners.”
The statement added that the CPM had been demanding for decades that the “anachronistic law” be replaced to provide “adequate security” to farmers. The CPI, however, said it had expressed reservations on the methods of land acquisition.