Govt. looking for common ground to break impasse over Land Bill

‘The options will allow both sides to claim victory’

Updated - December 04, 2021 11:29 pm IST

Published - July 05, 2015 01:55 am IST - NEW DELHI

Following directions from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), “thinking heads” in the Modi government have begun to formulate a strategy for breaking the impasse in the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) over the controversial Land Acquisition Bill.

Options are being discussed to find a meeting ground for the government and the Opposition parties on three contentious provisions of the Bill — the consent clause, the social impact analysis and issues related to food security.

The UPA’s Land Acquisition Act required that at least 80 per cent of landowners must give consent to land acquisition for private projects and 70 per cent for public-private partnership projects.

Exemptions The Modi government’s Bill proposes to exempt from consent five kinds of projects — defence, rural infrastructure, affordable housing, industrial corridors and infrastructure — when the Centre owns the land. A top government source told The Hindu that one option was to peg the number of consenting landowners to somewhere between 51 per cent and 80 per cent, but to apply this clause only to acquisitions for purely private use.

A new category of “essential infrastructure” will be created and defined for both rural and urban areas that will be exempted even from this redefined consent clause.

Lastly, those acquisitions for PPP projects where land will continue to vest with the government will be exempted.

“This will cover most of the five categories of infrastructure to which the Ordinance provides exemption,” the source said. The discussions on options are still under way. If the PMO gives the go-ahead, senior BJP leaders or Ministers could take them up — formally or informally — with the Opposition.

“The options will have to be such that both sides will be able to claim victory,” the source said.

On social impact assessment, one of the options, said the source, was to break it up into two parts: decide whether or not to go ahead with acquisition; and, decide on compensation and rehabilitation and resettlement and apply as per requirements of the projects.

Here are the six important facts you need to know about the Land Bill. Source:

1 The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Amendment) Bill, 2015 seeks to Amend the Act of 2013 (LARR Act, 2013).
2 The Bill creates five special categories of land use: 1. defence, 2. rural infrastructure, 3. affordable housing, 4. industrial corridors, and 5. infrastructure projects including Public Private Partnership (PPP) projects where the central government owns the land
3 The Bill exempts the five categories from provisions of the LARR Act, 2013 which requires the consent of 80 per cent of land ownersto be obtained for private projects and that of 70 per cent of land owners for PPP projects.
4 The Bill allows exemption for projects in these five categories from requiring Social Impact Assessment be done to identify those affected and from the restrictions on the acquisition of irrigated multi-cropped land imposed by LARR Act 2013.
5 The Bill brings provisions for compensation, rehabilitation, and resettlement under other related Acts such as the National Highways Act and the Railways Act in consonance with the LARR Act.
6 The Bill changes acquisition of land for private companies mentioned in LARR Act, 2013 to acquisition for ‘private entities’. A private entity could include companies, corporations and nonprofit organisations.

What does the Ordinance mean ?

For Industries

For Farmers

Ordinance envisages projects in defence, rural housing and industrial corridors as exempt from seeking 80% approval from affected persons.

Farmers' compensation will remain the same — four times the market rate for urban areas, and twice for rural areas.

Private hospitals, educational institutions and hotels will be included under definition of public purpose, and exempt from SIA.

13 statutes that were previously exempted from the rigours of compensation have now been included.

The Ordinance aims to make land acquisition easier for industries, as delays in approvals have restricted growth in industry and infrastructure, according to stakeholders.

Multi-crop land can be acquired for five purposes without consent of affected families: national security, defence, rural infrastructure, industrial corridors and social infrastructure

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