Govt mulls annuity provision for displaced

Bhubaneswar: With land acquisition being one of the contentious issues posing as hurdle for industrialization, the state government is contemplating alteration in the R&R (Rehabilitation and Resettlement) policy 2006, in line with Haryana government’s R&R policy.

As per the proposed amendments, provision of annuity for land-losers will be incorporated so as to provide better deal to them.

"We are contemplating to adopt the Haryana model of R&R where land-losers will get some amount every year besides compensation for their land," Revenue and Disaster Management minister Surya Narayan Patro told a seminar on Resettlement and Rehabilitation, organised by CII here.

A sum of Rs 21,000 would be paid to land-losers annually per acre of land with a hike of Rs 750 in subsequent years till 33 years, Patro said.

"The amendment of the land acquisition act is for the betterment of all stakeholders and needs cooperation," he expressed.

Notably, a committee headed by state chief secretary has been constituted to examine scope for necessary modifications in the existing R&R policy introduced since 2006.

On the other hand, Congress leader and former Berhampur MP Chandrasekhar Sahu has demanded return of land acquired from farmers in Gopalpur for the Tata steel project. Sahu said, as there has been no construction on the acquired land, the lands should be returned to the oustees. The state government should take cue from neighbouring West Bengal government that passed an ordinance to return land acquired for the Tata Nano car project to farmers. 

It may be recalled here that Singur Land Rehabilitation and Development Act, 2011 came into effect last month in West Bengal soon after Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee assumed office. In 2007, the Tatas started construction of a factory at Singur to build the Nano car, but moved out in October 2008, after an agitation led by Mamata Banerjee, in support of farmers who owned 400 of around 1000 acres of land acquired for the project.

The return of Singur land to farmers was one of the poll promises made by Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee.