The Narendra Modi-government today decided to ease the land acquisition process through an emergency order, in a move meant to accelerate stalled projects worth billions of dollars.

“The changes in Land Acquisition Act have been done after extensive consultations with states,” Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said while announcing the decision.

Jaitley said the rules will be relaxed for acquisition of land in five areas—defence purposes, rural infrastructure, affordable housing and housing projects for the poor, industrial corridors, and infrastructure or social infrastructure projects, including those in public-private projects in which ownership of land will remain with the government.

While the compensation will remain high as per the act, and rehabilitation and resettlement will be followed, the procedure for acquiring land for these projects will be easier by omitting steps like social impact assessment, impact on food security, and consent of 80 per cent land owners, he added.

NDTV reported that the governments plans to clear the ordinance by the next parliamentary session in February.

The Land Acquisition Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013, which was enacted under the Manmohan Singh government, requires 70 percent of the land-owning community to give consent to allow acquisition for public-private partnership projects. Eighty percent consent is required for private sector projects.

Public-private partnership projects account for 60 percent of the stalled projects worth Rs18 lakh crore in rail, steel, mining and roads, the Business Standard Read more

Courtesy: The Huffington Post