Supreme Court Vs Tata Motors Again!


Supreme Court asks Tata Motors to clarify its land rights in Singur

Last week, the Supreme Court asked Tata Motors to consider returning the land allotted for its Nano plant in Bengal, to the farmers. But before we proceed to analyse this latest development in the controversy, lets get our facts right.

tata sungur land controversy

So one thing that’s pretty clear from this timeline is that the government, to tackle the slow economy looks to the corporate world which puts forward lucrative offers that they accept, without taking the whole picture into account. Just take the recent depreciation of rupee for example. To tackle the decreasing value of a rupee, government has increased the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) cap on proposed services like telecom, insurance etc.

Isn’t the government supposed to look at the pros and cons of an idea or a policy before making a decision? But, as usual, the government did not bother considering the problems that the public will face.

Coming back to Tata Motors; you will be surprised to know that the land allotted to the company was a fertile, multi crop land. And the people staying on the proposed land were forced to evacuate by the government. The compensation given was considered inadequate and the new housing facilities offered were delayed. This led to the protest of the peasants which was backed by the opposition political parties.

All the promises that the company made were just words that never saw the daylight. According to their claims, Singur would have been a mini-auto city and approximately 70 vendors would set up shop along with the factory. However, the project had generated controversy right from the start, particularly on the question of state acquisition of fertile agricultural land for private enterprise.

And now that the company is all set in Gujarat there is no point in holding back the Singur land.  Therefore, the right thing would be to return the land back to its rightful owners, the farmers.

You will be surprised to know that this is not the first case where the government has left people homeless in the name of development.  Have you read about the POSCO plant in Orissa? However, in this case things became worse when the farmers  were tortured and false criminal cases were fabricated against them.

So what does the government mean when it talks about development?  Because if development means uprooting people from their homes; then I am sorry I prefer that India remains an underdeveloped country forever.

Kanchan Monga

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