Allahabad, Jul 27 (PTI) In a fresh trouble to Mayawati government, farmers from the Chief Minister''s village today filed pleas in the Allahabad High Court challenging acquisition of more than 200 hectares and alleged that plots belonging to "influential" land-owners were exempted in a "discriminatory" manner.

"Altogether 50 farmers from Badalpur village in Gautam Buddh Nagar district have filed their petitions. They have challenged the acquisition of 230 hectares falling in the village by the state government vide notifications issued in the year 2008," petitioners'' lawyer V M Zaidi told reporters.
Zaidi said the petitioners have alleged that the state government had acquired the land by invoking the urgency clause that the land was needed for industrial development of the area.

"The farmers'' contention is that in this way they were denied the opportunity to raise objections or bargain for adequate compensation. Yet, a number of influential farmers in the village were granted exemption from the acquisition in a discriminatory and arbitrary manner," the lawyer said.

The government is under attack for acquiring land in a number of villages in Gautam Buddh Nagar district for developing the Noida Extension areas.
Acquisition of more than 150 hectares in a village was set aside by the High Court and the state government''s appeal against the judgement was turned down by the Supreme Court recently.

Farmers from Mayawati''s village file pleas against acquisition -  

Badalpur villagers challenge land acquisition in HC - The Times of India
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  • A new, and even bigger, house for Mayawati !!

    Mayawati’s father and relatives used to work on the farms owned by Jagdish Nambardar. Nambardar says he fell out with Dayal in 2007 because Dayal refused to see him at his new house in New Delhi.


    Her house, as seen from the Grand Trunk Road

    “He instructed his men not to let me disturb him ever and made me wait for hours and hours on the road,” Nambardar, now 80+, recalls. “He was a regular member of our family like others; work and farm yields were always shared equally.”

    As a symbol of protest, Nambardar fought the local body election last year under the regional farmers’ union called Kisan Sansh Samiti (Farmers’ Struggle Committee). He won by a huge margin.

    Badalpur has a sizeable Jatav population—close to 35 percent. But the Jatav families of the village echo Nambardar’s feeling of betrayal.

    They too lost land so Mayawati’s grand house could come up.

    Hari Ram (his name has been changed on request because he fears a backlash from BSP workers), is head of one of the families whose land was acquired for the new house.

    He says, “Dayal called us to his house in New Delhi and abused us. He said ‘Idiots, are you going to stay as chamars (a word not used in public that basically means untouchable) forever? He said we need to shed our inhibitions and contribute to the Dalit movement. He forced us to sign the land sale papers. He fooled us.”

    Ram alleges that after Dayal moved away from the village, there has only been land grabbing in the village in the name of development projects.

    In 2009, the Supreme Court had asked Mayawati, in a personal capacity, why only her land, on which the bungalow is now coming up, was exempted from acquisition for the parks and the helipad.

    The GNIDA had issued the notification for land acquisition in 2007 under an emergency clause.

    A case was filed by Khazan Singh, owner of a 7,000 square metre plot next to Mayawati’s plot.

    Singh lost the case because government records, apparently changed in 2006 before the acquisition process started, showed that Mayawati’s land fell under the non-agricultural category, which kept it out of the ambit of acquisition.

    Interestingly, documents now show that all the land surrounding her plot falls under the agricultural category. And so it was acquired for the projects.


    The park next to Mayawati's house, being developed by the Greater Noida Industrial Development Authority

    Many farmers protested the move to acquire land for these projects. A farmers union was formed under Rupesh Verma, a social activist from Sadopur village.

    But, it was crushed within weeks and Verma was warned by GNIDA officials to refrain from ‘netagiri’ (meddling).

    Most villagers around Badalpur see this GNIDA behaviour as a betrayal of their hopes and expectations.

    They were not even offered work at the construction sites, they allege. Only migrant workers from eastern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar have been employed.

    Verma is miffed with the government and the administration, and enraged over the construction of the house. He calls it a palace.

    “Why such grandeur? Just because every other chief minister has also done it. This shows that one feudal system is being replaced by another. Nobody is bothered about welfare measures,” he says.

    Cashing in on such dissent, the Congress and the Samajwadi Party have extended support to various farmers’ movements ahead of the 2012 assembly polls.

    But not everybody is against this symbolism.

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  • Search on for middle ground


    Date: 2011-07-28 Place: Delhi






    The authorities brief farmers about the new rehabilitation policy and benefits yesterday

    Acting swiftly after the Allahabad High Court gave Uttar Pradesh government and agitating farmers 17 days to try and negotiate an out-of-court settlement, Greater Noida Industrial Development Authority (GNIDA) on Wednesday initiated fresh negotiations with farmers and offered them cash incentive, annuity and other sops.
    In the meeting GNIDA briefed farmers about the new rehabilitation policy and benefits. Also, besides land compensation, under the new scheme, farmers will get annuity of Rs. 23,000 per acre for 33 years. GNIDA officials said that farmers could also collect one time payment if they desire. The rate would be Rs 2.76 lakh per acre.


    Compromise?
    A majority of farmers want to solve the matter out of court since construction work had already been going on at the land taken by the authority and they can no more be brought to use for farming purpose. Also, farmers are cautious in negotiating with builders directly. "There are many builders whose project is hanging in air and they have deputed their agents to get in touch with us. They are trying to persuade us to agree at the price offered by them. Builders have offered Rs 2000 to Rs 3000 per square metre as additional amount," said Ramender Singh, a farmer from Bisrakh village.

    Money well spent!
    Farmers in villages other than Shahberi have taken land compensation through mutual agreement which they had spent on marrying their children or buying luxury cars and building houses. "We don't have money to return back to the authority. If tomorrow, we are asked to, it won't be possible for us. We do not want to create hindrance in the development of the city. We too want development. But our main concern is that we should get a share in profit too," said another villager, Ramesh Bhati.

    Meanwhile, Noida Chairman Balwinder Kumar continued visiting villages to pacify farmers. He visited Sadarpur and other villages and promised to hand over five per cent of developed land and resolve abadi land issues. It is only the Authority which can solve abadi land disputes, so the farmers want the negotiations to be held through the Authority instead of directly with the builders. Farmer leader Naresh Yadav claims that there are more than 800 claims of the 5 % plots pending since 2005 in his area alone. However, the authority had earlier claimed that it has fast-tracked the process of solving abadi land disputes with villagers.

    'Plot' thickens
    Acquisition of more than 3000 hectares of land, spread across nearly a dozen villages, has been challenged by the petitioners who have alleged that their land was acquired by the state government by invoking "urgency clause" which had deprived them of an opportunity to raise objections as well as to bargain for a better compensation. The fate of thousands of people, who have invested in housing projects in the Noida Extension area, as well as over a dozen real estate developers also hinges on the court verdict.

    'Case study'
    Nearly 50 villagers of Badalpur filed a writ petition in the Allahabad High Court on Wednesday challenging the notification for acquisition of their land by the Greater Noida Authority and the state government. Badalpur is the native village of UP chief minister Mayawati. The writ petition is likely to come up for hearing before a division bench of the high court on Friday. The petitioners have challenged the acquisition proceedings on the ground that the entire acquisition proceeding is a one-sided exercise of power by the authority and the UP government.
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  • Allahabad HC posts Badalpur acquisition case for hearing on August 17

    7/29/2011
    29.7.2011 (UNI) Allahabad High court today posted all the cases related to the land acquisition including the petitions of the Badalpur village, the native place of Chief Minister Mayawati to a larger bench which will take up the matter on August 17.

    The bench comprising Justices Amitabh Lala and Ashok Srivastava posted several petitions challenging the land acquisition by the UP government for hearing on August 17.

    About 50 farmers of Badalpur in Greater Noida, led by one Kartar Singh have filed petitions challenging the land acquisition by the state government through illegal manner.

    The petitions alleged that hundred of acres of land have been forcefully acquired by the state government without proper process.

    The other petitions were filed by the farmers of Patwari, Khara Chamanpur, Iteda, Sahadra, Suthiyan and Roza Yakubpur.

    On July 26 the bench of Justice Amitabh Lala and Ashok Srivastava had fixed August 17 as the next date of hearing of over 200 petitions challenging the land acquisition in Noida and Greater Noida by a larger bench. UNI

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