Sees plan to hand over excess land at Aranmula to airport company

The Communist Party of India has strongly condemned the alleged move of the government to sabotage the Land Reforms Act with a view to hand over the excess land identified in Aranmula to a private airport company.

In a statement issued here on Wednesday, CPI district secretary P. Prasad alleged that Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and Revenue Minister Adoor Prakash were trying to allot 232 acres of excess land identified by the Revenue Department in Aranmula to the airport company through unlawful means. He said this was sheer violation of the oath of office taken by the Ministers.

Mr. Prasad said as per the prevailing laws, 87.5 per cent of the excess land should be allotted among the landless agriculture labourers and half of them should be those belonging to the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe sections. The State government was saying that it would not implement this, he alleged.

It was nothing but sheer irony to watch the Chief Minister and Revenue Minister issuing statements in support of the company when a case involving the excess land issue was pending before the Kerala High Court. He added that the stand taken by the Chief Minister and Revenue Minister was nothing short of challenging the rule of justice itself.

The Ministers who had shifted the District Collector, Deputy Collector, Land Revenue Commissioner and Revenue Secretary for declining to sabotage the existing laws in favour of a private company were not supposed to continue in the respective posts, he said.

SEZ status

The government move to allot special economic zone status for the private airport project with a dubious design to evict the hapless villagers, instead of taking stern action against the company that had been violating the laws, amounted to State terrorism.

The CPI leader alleged that Mr. Chandy was trying to sabotage a landmark legislation that had been deemed as a model to the rest of the country with the backing of the Advisor to the Prime Minister. The people of Aranmula would never accept this arrogant attitude of Mr. Chandy and Mr. Prakash, he said.

Mr. Prasad said Mr. Chandy should not forget the fact that the illegal land conversion had taken place at Aranmula during the UDF rule in 2001-2006 and it was a shame on the part of the State government to become enslaved to a private company.

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