Land Bill: Opposition pushes govt to a corner at JPC

AM JIGEESH New Delhi | Updated on January 24, 2018

Deadline for making representations extended

A meeting of the Joint Committee on the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Second Amendment) Bill witnessed protests by the Opposition members here on Monday.

They objected to the government’s decision to re-promulgate the Land Ordinance when the panel has started its proceedings.

The members also questioned the purpose of continuation of the committee when the Prime Minister and other senior members in the Cabinet maintain that no change in the Land Acquisition Ordinance is possible.

Agreeing to a demand by the Opposition members, the panel has extended the date to seek views and suggestions from various public bodies, organisations, associations, individuals and other stakeholders for a week.

The last date for submission of suggestions was on Monday. “We have got more than 150 representations as of now,” a member said.

There was another demand to extend the time limit of the panel from July 20 to one more week. “We may not be able to complete the proceedings by July 20 since a number of organisations and individuals want to appear before the panel,” said a member from the Opposition side.

The panel, meanwhile, started analysing the Bill clause by clause.

The Opposition members argued that the government should explain why the definition of private companies was changed to private entities. Some members argued that even though the government claims that the Bill is in favour of farmers, it failed to convene even one meeting of the farmers’ organisations on the issue.

Farmers’ complaint

The farmers’ outfits have complained in their representations that the amendments are a step backwards and reinstate the anti-peasant Land Acquisition Act of 1894.

They accused the government of ignoring the protests against the proposed Amendments and added that the decision to promulgate the Ordinance a third time even as a Joint Parliamentary Committee is looking into the matter is an act in utter contempt of the established Parliamentary norms and undermines the authority of the JPC.

Published on June 08, 2015

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