Turmoil and way Forward

Agitation has become perennial, credit for that goes to faulty land acquisition law. Amidst political squabble the prime stakeholder, ‘Farmer’s ‘plight is worsening continuously. To gainfully utilize the Protest what we are witnessing is competitive Protagonism by all and sundry political leaders. Rahul Gandhi, Amar Singh on pillion en route to UP’s Bhatta Parsaul village to back farmers. BJP, SP leaders staged Arrest. What we require is that the political class must show vision in this regard.

The current government is akin to Ottoman ruler which is strenuously acquiring farmers land and not paying enough compensation. Even doleful situation does not cease here and farmers are even being shot at.  This is pillage of the land resources of the farmers. It is not enough for the farmers to get fair compensation, but also rehabilitation and resettlement is too required.

The 165 km Expressway from Greater Noida to Agra is being handed to dubious industrialist, JP Associates {Mr. Jaiprakash is also alleged in Amar Singh’s CD controversy}. JP Associates has acquired 2,500 hectares of land from farmers for this purpose. But deplorably the lamentable story does not terminate here .the Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority has acquired gazillion of land in the areas adjoining the expressway and selling them to real estate consortium at prices much higher than what was given to the farmers. The Industrialist, in turn, sells land at a much higher price originally given to the farmers.

Amidst protest by the farmers there has started confrontation among various political party. Mayawati dubbed Gandhi’s dharna dramabaazi and advised him to raise the matter in Parliament where a Bill to amend the 1894 Land Acquisition Act has been pending for years. Arun Jaitley, The Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha’, said the situation in UP is such that even legitimate protest is prohibited. This is an intolerant Government. Our protest will continue irrespective of repression,”

Let’s now dwell into the oodles of problems in land acquisition. The land acquisition act is of 1894 which requires an immediate overhaul. The value of land remains the most perverse issue and adequate compensation needs to be given to the displaced people for protecting their living standards. This is one of the common problems in land acquisition and resettlement.

Humans have a bonafide emotional relationship with land, property, hard earned belongings et al. So it is not unforeseen that a sense of collective tribulation and exasperation builds up from time to time as rural folk fluster over future value of land surrendered for industrial and urban use.

Since illiterate farmers are usually oblivious of their rights and cannot dexterously assert them, they are offered compensation much below the market value. The land is then transferred to industrialists.

To solve the vexing land issue problem the government must seek the opinion of every stakeholder before the land is acquired. The antediluvian law must be given a makeover.

It is not enough for the farmers to get fair compensation, but also rehabilitation and resettlement is too required. Last but not the least Environment should also be given due justice.

Nilaya Mitashshanker