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- Should Govt stop directly acquiring land for Industry?
The government should facilitate release of farmland for commercial use, through law and enforcement, but not directly undertake such release. Ideally, commercial users of erstwhile farmland should lease the land from its owners, rather than expropriate farmers. Urbanisation is a corollary to sustained high growth: industry and services that drive this fast growth do not flourish on the farm.
This calls for increasing the supply of urban land -- around existing towns and, in some cases, by converting wholly rural, fertile land into urban land where to build factories, office complexes and housing and other amenities for those who work in the factories and offices. And the scale of demand for additional urban land would also be substantial.
If India is to become 45% urban by the middle of the next decade, and assuming that India is already close to 32% urban, around 25 crore people would need to additionally shift from country to town. Assuming a population density of 15,000 per sq km, the minimum additional urban land required to house these new town dwellers would be 16,700 sq km. That is roughly 12 New Delhis.
If we want people to live in less congested circumstances, the land needed to be released would go up to 16 New Delhis or even 20. Do we have any policy in place to release land, without creating mass protests? Forcible acquisition of land is no answer. Singur and Nandigram and the farmers of UP amply prove that. Nor will parcel by parcel purchase of the needed land by a project developer work.
Different people would bargain to get different rates, the rates rising over the time it takes to complete the acquisition process, paving the way for discontent among those who sold cheap. And once the project is developed and real estate values soar, those who held on to their land would become very prosperous while their ex-neighbours would be relative paupers nursing a grudge.
You need acquiescence, not acquisition. For that, farmers need to be stakeholders in what comes up on their land, not an alienated, vengeful bunch of newly landless destitutes ready to strike out any which way. There are no standard prescriptions as to how to make stakeholders out of land losers. The latest Mayawati package offered to farmers in Greater Noida is a way forward: upfront compensation, a steady stream of payments for the future and a portion of the land to be returned to the farmer as built-up real estate.
Should Govt stop directly acquiring land for Industry? - Economic TimesCommentQuote0Flag
- Draft Land acquisition Bill
Draft Land acquisition Bill offers land owners bigger rewards of industrialisation & urbanisation
Steering clear off the debate regarding the government's role in land acquisition, the draft National Land Acquisition and Rehabilitation & Resettlement Bill, 2011, offers land owners a bigger share of the rewards of industrialisation and urbanisation.
The draft bill, which has been put in public domain, proposes a liberal compensation and award package for land owners that includes a subsistence allowance of 3,000 per family per month for a year, annuity of 2,000 per family per month for 20 years, 20% of the appreciation in value of land during each transaction for 10 years, and mandatory employment provisions, among other things.
Observing that land markets in India are "imperfect", Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh said in his foreword to the draft that there is asymmetry of power and information between those wanting to acquire the land and those whose land is being acquired. "That is why there has to be a role for the government to put in place a transparent and flexible set of rules and regulations and to ensure its enforcement," he said.
Draft Land acquisition Bill offers land owners bigger rewards of industrialisation & urbanisation - Economic TimesCommentQuote0Flag
- Draft land bill out, govt looks to curtail role in acquisition
Draft land bill out, govt looks to curtail role in acquisition - Hindustan TimesCommentQuote0Flag
- Haryana using land acquisition clause to benefit private builders?
Haryana using land acquisition clause to benefit private builders? - The Economic TimesCommentQuote0Flag
- State faces another land grab case
State faces another land grab case - The Times of IndiaCommentQuote0Flag