Skip to main content

Govt of India wants to "reduce" land acquisition Act into compensation granting mechanism

By Our Representative
One of the world's most influential NGOs, Oxfam, taking strong exception to the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (LARR) ordinance, which was hurriedly brought in to replace the LARR Act late last year, has asked the Government of India to roll it back immediately. The ordinance is now being sought to be replaced by an amendment law by the Modi government.
Headquartered in UK, Oxfam in a recent note has said, “By undoing the applicability of the LARR law on critical sectors where the largest amount of land acquisition is taking place, like industrial corridors or mines, the 2014 ordinance reduces the law to a compensation granting mechanism.”
Currently before Parliament for nod, Oxfam says, the LARR ordinance has especially done away with the processes such as social impact assessment (SIA) which was a significant gain and was “welcomed by affected people and social movements”. Then, it has sought to do away with the 2013 law's provision of "seeking consent from owners of land in case land is being acquired for private sector projects or projects under public private partnership (PPP).”
Saying this should not be allowed, Oxfam says, these changes would only go to help “many projects including mining, SEZs, transportation, tourism”, hence they should be “immediately undone and no further dilutions should be allowed”.
Other changes sought by Oxfam include revoking “exemptions to SIA on acquisition of land multicropped land”, and reinstatement of 2013 Act's “provisions related to return of unutilized land” to the original owner. It adds, there are in all “nineteen amendments floated by the Ministry of Rural Development, with possibilities existing for “adversely modifying the rates of compensation”.
Oxfam takes objection to the ordinance adding a “new section to the 2013 Act, which includes a range of projects for which the provisions of SIA and food security safeguards will not apply. This includes acquisition of land for defence or national security projects, infrastructure projects (including tourism, mining, and transportation), industrial corridors (like Special Economic Zones) and affordable housing for low income groups.”
Oxfam also disagrees to the ordinance's provision which ensures that there is no cognizance of offence made by government employees in any court without it being first sanctioned by the government. “The 2013 Act had put the liability of any offence committed under the Act, directly on the head of a government department”, adds Oxfam.
Calling the LARR ordinance, 2014 “a conscious and retrograde step, which aims to bring about long-term changes targeted primarily towards speedy land acquisition for project developers”, Oxfam believes, it is “likely to create more social and environmental conflicts rather than resolve them.”
Prepared by Kanchi Kohli, a researcher on environment, forest and biodiversity governance, for Oxfam's India branch, the note concludes that the ordinance is “in favour of those acquiring land rather than the project impacted communities, especially those who are poor and landless.”

Comments

TRENDING

Billion vaccine doses? Devil is in details: 70% haven't got 2nd jab; numbers jacked up

By Prof Ujjwal K Chowdhury*  India has reached the one billion Covid-19 vaccinations milestone. It is indeed a great news and a big salute to the less paid ordinary health-workers in interiors of India for this feat. The government wants all of India's 944 million adults to get vaccinated this year. Around three-quarters of adults in the country of 1.3 billion people have had one shot and around 30 percent are fully vaccinated, the government says.

Savarkar 'criminally betrayed' Netaji and his INA by siding with the British rulers

By Shamsul Islam* RSS-BJP rulers of India have been trying to show off as great fans of Netaji. But Indians must know what role ideological parents of today's RSS/BJP played against Netaji and Indian National Army (INA). The Hindu Mahasabha and RSS which always had prominent lawyers on their rolls made no attempt to defend the INA accused at Red Fort trials.

Political consensus? Celebrations, with over 5,000 plus post-vaccine deaths in India

By Rosamma Thomas*  As India fully vaccinated nearly 20% of its population and celebrated the “milestone” of administering one billion (100 crore) Covid-19 vaccine doses, it was time to remember those who died shortly after vaccination . By October 20, 2021 Twitter handle C400T, tracking deaths reported to have occurred after receiving the Covid-19 shot in India, updated the 5,134th death.

Top upper caste judges 'biased' towards Dalit colleagues: US Bar Association report

By Rajiv Shah  A high profile report prepared by the influential  American Bar Association (ABA) Center for Human Rights , taking note of the fact that “in the 70-year history of the Indian Republic, only six Dalit judges have been appointed to the Supreme Court”, has taken strong exception to what it calls “lack of representation of Dalits” in the legal profession and the judiciary.

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Failure of 'trickle down theory' behind India's poor Global Hunger Index rating

By Dr Gian Singh*  On October 14, 2021, two organisations, Concern Worldwide (An Irish aid agency) and WeltHungerHilfe (a German organization that researches the problem of global hunger), jointly published the Global Hunger Index (GHI) for 2021. These organizations have included 116 countries in the world hunger rankings.

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Uttarakhand, Kerala disaster due to policies favouring India's developmental mafia

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat*  Two of India’s most beautiful regions where thousands of people go to watch and feel the wonders of nature are suffering because of the extremely disastrous rains and floods. The pain that the rains brought to Kerala and Uttarakhand is a warning to all of us. It's nature’s warning to us to mend our ways.

March opposes Sabarmati Ashram renovation: 'Mahatmaji had kept open for access to all'

Counterview Desk A Sevagram to Sabarmati march, which began on October 17 from Wardha (Maharashtra) and will end on October 24 in Ahmedabad (Gujarat), has demanded that the Sabarmati Ashram, the government should not impose "the fashion and glitz of a shallow modernity" at the cost of Rs 1,200 crore, in the name of renovating the Ashram founded by Gandhiji.

Religious mobs replicate blasphemy laws, 'threatening' liberty in a free country

Nihangs, Lakhbir Singh By Ajit Singh*   A Dalit man, Lakhbir Singh, was mercilessly beaten up and lynched to death near farmers’ protest site in the State of Haryana allegedly by Nihang Sikhs. It was alleged that he committed blasphemy by desecrating the Holy Book Guru Granth Sahib.