Maharashtra Amends Rehabilitation Law

Maharashtra amends Rehabilitation Law
By Staff Report

The government of Mahrashtra have gone back on their words to allot developed land to farmers who gave land for infrastructure and industrial projects. In December 2009, the state government amended the law that provided farmers developed land in lieu of land acquired from them.
The Maharashtra Project Affected Persons’ Rehabilitation Act, 2009 had a clause that said 12.5 per cent land developed for a project should be given to the farmers from whom the project land is acquired. The amendment, passed during the winter session of the Assembly, has gone away with this clause.
World Bank also, in the past had raised the issue while funding to MMRDA’s project was withdrawn for want of fair deals to displaced persons. Farmers who will be displaced by MIHAN in Nagpur would have been the first to get developed land under the law if it had not been amended. The farmers who have refused to vacate their land are upset over the latest development.
The amendment was made becuase cost of developed land has risen steeply. Project affected persons will now be given alternative land, the state information department said in a press release on 9th December 2009. This is the second amendment in the Act in the past four months. In August 2009, an amendment was made to dilute the clause relating to giving developed land to farmers by adding the options of cash compensation or equivalent Transfer of Development Rights for property development. Those who opposed, like in Navi Mumbai and Reliance SEZ, got permanent reservation of Agriculture use and will not be allowed to give it for residential purposes.

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